By Jeremy Balan
St. Ignatius outgained visiting Marin Catholic in every offensive category and controlled the game for three quarters, but there was one glaring difference between the two teams.
When the two teams got into positions to score in the second half, St. Ignatius kicked field goals and Marin Catholic scored touchdowns.
St. Ignatius outgained Marin Catholic 438-263, and after SI kicker Michael Capitolo’s second field goal of the game, SI opened up a 20-7 lead midway through the fourth quarter.
But Marin Catholic scored three unanswered touchdowns in just over five minutes to take a 28-20 lead.
Then, with 1:07 remaining, SI junior quarterback Jack Stinn led the Wildcats on a 61-yard scoring drive, capped by a 2-yard touchdown run from fullback Dom Truoccolo with 14 seconds remaining to cut the lead to 28-26.
On the ensuing 2-point conversion attempt Stinn rolled left, but was intercepted by Marin Catholic senior linebacker Malek Banoun.
But St. Ignatius still wasn’t done.
Truoccolo recovered the ensuing onside kick with 10 seconds remaining, but Stinn’s final heave was intercepted by Marin Catholic’s Gavin Hession to seal the win.
“I like how our guys responded in different situations today, in the first game of the season against a great opponent,” said St. Ignatius head coach John Regalia. “It’s what the game has been the past few years, a tight game. There are different emotions, but I like how our guys played.”
The Marin Catholic comeback spoiled what was a coming-out party for Stinn.
Gone are the days of St. Ignatius’ run-heavy, ball-control offense, as Stinn connected with seven different receivers for 300 yards and two touchdowns on 23-of-43 passing. The left-hander was shaky early on, but made tremendous throws in key spots late in the game.
“Jack did a great job managing the football game,” Regalia said. “He moved the ball and made great plays in those game situations where you have to let your instincts go.”
The St. Ignatius defense also shined through three quarters, limiting Marin Catholic to 118 yards heading into the fourth quarter. In the fourth, however, Marin Catholic more than doubled their offensive production.
“We had a lot of opportunities to get ahead and score, but we dropped some balls and made a few mistakes here an there,” said Marin Catholic head coach Mazi Moayed. “Nobody blinked and everyone kept working hard and kept at it.”
The positives St. Ignatius can take away from the game likely won’t take the sting away from the heart-wrenching loss, but the improvement from last year’s underwhelming performance against Marin Catholic should give SI supporters solace.
“We’re at the beginning of the season and we’re learning and getting better,” Regalia said. “This was a good game for us to start the year.”
SI: 11:22 — Charles Goldensohn 5-yard pass from Jack Stinn (Michael Capitolo kick good)
MC: 8:28 — Chris Tewhill 4-yard run (Andrew Celis kick good)
SI: 7:14 — Albert Waters 33-yard pass from Stinn (Capitolo kick)
SI: 1:47 — Capitolo 33-yard field goal
SI: 6:47 — Capitolo 25-yard field goal
MC: 6:36 — Ryan Farney 42-yard pass from Jared Goff (Celis kick good)
MC: 1:36 — Nick Devere 4-yard run (Celis kick good)
MC: 1:15 — Tewhill 23-yard run (Celis kick good)
SI: 0:10 — Dom Truoccolo 2-yard run (conversion failed)