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Football Playoffs: Amador Valley Edges San Ramon Valley High in Downpour

Amador Valley's Alejandro Apodaca runs 78 yards for the game winning touchdown in the NCS Division I match-up.

Amador Valley 28, San Ramon Valley 25

In Danville on Saturday night, rain built to a monsoon making the pigskin nearly impossible to grasp.

However, visiting Amador Valley High held on to upset San Ramon Valley High, 28-25, in the second round of the North Coast Section Division I playoffs.

The fourth seeded Dons employed a balanced rushing attack that flashed some power inside the tackles with Samuel Peters and speed to the outside with Alejandro Apodaca. Apodaca rushed 20 times for 161 yards and two touchdowns while Peters rumbled for 113 on 21 carries.

“It sure was wet and wild with lots of turnovers,” said Amador Valley coach Rick Sira of his team's 296 yard rushing performance. “Our defense played great and our hogs up front did a tremendous job opening up holes for our running game.” 

The Amador defense also forced seven Wolves turnovers, including three interceptions and four fumbles, one which was returned 40 yards for a touchdown by Parker Newman.

The Dons were able to avenge a 22-15 defeat on Sept. 28 by the Wolves. They  advance to the NCS semifinals to face top-seeded De La Salle High.

“San Ramon Valley is a very good football team and in the first game I thought our guys competed,” said Sira. “We had some guys play tonight that were not available in the first game. Anytime you can defeat a team that was co-champions of the EBAL, that is a great win.” 

Apodaca scooted down the sideline for a 78-yard touchdown giving the Dons a 28-25 lead, late in the third quarter. The score ended up being the last points of the contest, as the Amador defense pitched a shutout for the remaining 14 minutes.

Wolves’ quarterback Cameron Birse and the San Ramon Valley offense displayed flashes of brilliance in between turnovers. Birse connected on a 20-yard, over-the-middle, touchdown toss to tight end (and birthday boy) Ryan Dunn to give San Ramon Valley the lead at 7-6.

Birse also connected on a fade route in the corner of the end zone with a leaping super sophomore, J.J. Koski, giving the Wolves the advantage at 25-20 with 3:01 remaining in the third quarter. 

The teams’ traded four fourth quarter turnovers before Amador Valley took possession of the football with 2:15 remaining in the fourth. The Dons were able to collect two first downs on the ground and salt away the final few seconds on the clock to send the home fans to the parking lot bitter and soaking wet.

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