By Jeremy Balan
Balboa High School did not have a pleasant day offensively in its 37-6 nonleague loss to visiting Analy High School of Sebastopol on Saturday.
The statistics were daunting for the Buccaneers (0-3): Forty-eight total first-half yards, five interceptions, seven sacks allowed and a staggering 17 plays for negative yardage.
“When you play slow, that’s what happens,” said Balboa head coach Alvaro Carvajal. “We just didn’t get after it today. At the end of the day, in football, you’re playing against yourself. Self-discipline is a key for us to have success and that’s an area we’re going to get better at. I promise you that.”
The Titans (2-1) didn’t perform much better offensively, only outgaining the Bucs 196-182, but they were aided by good field position throughout and two interceptions returned for touchdowns.
“The interceptions helped us on a day where we weren’t great offensively,” said Analy head coach Daniel Bourdon. “If the defense scores like that, we’re fine. We were joking on the sideline that our defense would outscore our offense today.”
While the Balboa turnovers were key, the plays for negative yardage appeared to be more disheartening for the Bucs. The main reason for the plays for loss was a penetrating Analy defense that hounded Balboa quarterback Kerati Apilakvanichakit all day and often hit Balboa ball carriers in the backfield.
“Our front eight guys are pretty good,” Bourdon said. “We’re not really big, but we have good speed and that helps to get into their backfield.”
Even with the large-deficit loss, Balboa showed signs of improvement late as Apilakvanichakit led the Bucs on a nine-play, 88-yard scoring drive with 3:40 remaining.
The drive was capped by 19-yard touchdown pass from Apilakvanichakit to senior receiver Christian Pulusian to put the Bucs on the board with their only score.
Balboa will travel to Sequoia of Redwood City for its final non-league game next week and Carvajal and the Bucs look to clean up some of their mistakes before their Academic Athletic Association opener against Marshall on Oct. 2. Redwood beat 2009 AAA champion Galileo 45-36 on Sept. 10.
“It’s an all around effort,” Carvajal said. “It’s unfair for us to put it all on [one player]. Everybody has to be accountable, and for the most part, we’re going to fix that with a good week of practice.”
A: 10:36 — Aaron Maher 39-yard pass from Jake Zanutto (Omar Galvan kick)
A: 11:45 — Zanutto 1-yard run (Galvan kick)
A: 2:25 — Issak Olsen 10-yard interception return (Galvan kick)
A: 10:03 — Kyle Lewis 35-yard interception return (Galvan kick blocked)
A: 1:12 — Jeff Silveria 1-yard run (Galvan kick)
A: 9:08 — Galvan 32-yard field goal
B: 3:40 — Christian Pulusian 19-yard pass from Kerati Apilakvanichakit (Conversion failed)