Varsity Dons Lose Heartbreaker to Amador Valley 12-14

The boys in blue performed valiantly on Friday night in Lafayette against another powerhouse team, the Amador Valley Dons.  The stands were full on both sides on a warm September evening.

The Acalanes Dons took the opening kickoff and marched down the field with a methodical drive that concluded with a touchdown pass from quarterback Sully Bailey to wide receiver Henry Souza for an early 6-0 lead.  The extra point was missed.  That was Souza’s 4th TD of the young season.

Amador Valley got the ball and immediately started handing the ball off.  They are a run first squad that only threw the ball three times in their previous game.  This game would be no exception.  Acalanes employed a bend but don’t break defense that worked very well in the first half.

Amador Valley then turned the ball over on downs deep in Dons territory before Acalanes started another long drive.  Bailey found wide receivers Niko White and Trevor Rodgers on the possession as well as running back Jack Giorgianni for key receptions, before finding wide receiver Mason Zirkel for a 13 yard touchdown!

The Dons two point try was unsuccessful, so the score remained Acalanes 12 Amador 0 in the 2nd quarter.  Amador continued to pound the rock, but they couldn’t score against a stout Acalanes defense.  After a short punt, the boys in blue were back in business again with good field position.

They were able to drive down to the Amador 1 yard line for a 4th and 1 decision.  The Dons went for it, unsuccessfully, in what turned out to be a critical call in the game.  Amador got the ball back and ran the clock out in the 2nd quarter, so the score stayed at 12-0 heading into halftime.

Unfortunately two way star Jack Giorgianni was injured just before the half at running back.  We hope to see Jack back in a couple of weeks.  He sat out the rest of the game.

Amador Valley got the ball to start the 2nd half.  They continued to pound the rock on the ground and were able to drive 75 yards for a 3rd quarter touchdown that cut the Acalanes lead to 12-7.  The Dons then turned the ball over on consecutive possessions to give Amador the game’s momentum and the lead at 14-12, after another time consuming touchdown drive.

Jake Boselli then came in at quarterback and seemed to give Acalanes some energy.  He ran for his life and eventually found open receivers to move the ball, but they could not knock it in.  The score remained 14-12, Amador HS, to start the 4th quarter.

The defense continued to play gritty to keep the Dons in the game. Everett Glass led the team with 11 tackles.  He was all over the field.  Wyatt Cooper got his first start at middle linebacker and had 10 impressive tackles, and Colin Malmquist and Deonte Littlejohn both added 8 tackles, including a sack for each of them.

The offensive and defensive lineman battled the larger Amador squad toe to toe the entire game.  Brady Morrow, Drew McKenzie, Henry Hagel, Trevor Carrillo and others fought the good fight all night long. 

The Dons had two opportunities in the 4th quarter.  On the first, Boselli drove the team to the Amador 6 yard line before a penalty and two consecutive sacks set up a 4th and long from the Amador 31.  Jake scrambled around to avoid the frantic Amador rush before launching a perfect spiral toward the back of the end zone towards Trevor Rodgers.  Rodgers made a sweet catch that sent the Acalanes crowd and sidelines into a wild frenzy.  Unfortunately he was just out of bounds by a couple of inches, so the Dons were forced to turn the ball over on downs.

The second opportunity came with just under a minute left in the game, after David Roux sacked the Amador quarterback on a 4th down to give the Dons one last chance.  Boselli found Mason Zirkel on 3 sideline patterns to pick up a quick 25 yards.  Niko White was able to coax a defense pass interference call to move the ball another 15 yards closer to the Amador goal line.  Unfortunately the Dons turned the ball over at the Amador 20 yard line with 20 seconds left in the game.  It felt like the Dons from Acalanes had outplayed the Dons from Amador Valley, but the scoreboard said differently.

Thankfully the Dons have gotten past the brutal first 3 games of the season.  The boys get a well deserved bye this week, before heading to Pleasant Hill to play College Park High School on Friday September 22.  Let’s get healthy and let’s get on a roll.  Here we go Blue!  Let’s GO DONS!!!