Football has always been the talk of the school, especially at the start of their season. Most of the talk is usually about how the game went or if you’re going or not. However, this year, all the teachers spoke with pride and students were hyping up the varsity football team because they made an appearance in the playoffs for the first time ever since 2004 and got their first playoff win since 1988.
The first team the Cardinals faced in the playoffs was Estancia HS and the Cardinals beat them 33 to 26.
“We celebrated this win by yelling with excitement in the guest locker room as well as posting our win on social media,” said junior Alfonso Messina, who plays both D and O lineman on varsity and JV.
In the second round of the playoffs, the Cardinals played against Anaheim. Families and friends came together to fill the stadium to cheer on the players.
“The audience was really hyped and the cheerleaders as well,” said junior Michael Torres, who carried the Block S flag.
“Seeing them made me excited since it made me realize that we were finally making history and bringing back that hope for the school,” said senior Martin Cruz, a lineman on the varsity team.
As the game went on, everyone was tense as our Cardinals were in the lead but the Anaheim Colonists were catching up on the scoreboard.
“It was intense during the game since it was a combination of physical and mental strength. This game meant a lot to us and we didn’t have a chance to think as our head should be in the game,” said Cruz.
Even though they lost 41 to 33, they played strong to the very end.
“It was sad. Even though I wasn’t playing, seeing how hard they worked and seeing some players cry, it got to me,” said Torres.
Despite this loss, they still continue to strive.
“We want to compete in general, not just for the glory but to compete in general, we just never want to stop playing,” said senior Job Joel Ayala Puente, who played offensive guard and defensive tackle on the varsity team.
Our Cardinal City football team experienced a huge amount of growth after previous seasons. This season was the first season they had a winning record since 2014.
“We gained coaches who were actually more serious about a sport than the previous years,” said Puente.
Our varsity team isn’t the only team showing growth and rising to the top. The JV team remained undefeated and won the Mountain Valley League Championship.
“I have been playing since my freshman year. One of the games we had, I scored two touchdowns and this whole entire season showed that our hard work paid off,” said junior Isaiah Anthony Bustamane, who played quarterback on the JV team.