Preview: Homestead

Friday night we open league play at home against the Homestead Mustangs. Homestead is 2-1 and has a very talented offense led by their quarterback #3 Mark Hirschbek and running back #9 Derek Rositas. They also feature an outstanding receiver #15 Bryan Erickson and a talented tight end #44 Joseph Faria. Ryan Allemandi #32 has also contributed with some big plays.

Defensively they are let by #52 (sometimes he wears #22) Joseph Llaou as their inside linebacker. They played three very close games and come out on top twice. Their only loss was last week to Fremont by one point in overtime.

The entire league seems very talented and Homestead is no exception. The Cats in the meantime are itching to get back on the field after a 1-2 preseason in which we had our chances to win both of the games we lost. Injuries continue to be a factor as four players did not practice last week. Hopefully some will return to practice this week.

A healthy week of practice could be a great start for the team. Some adjustments have been made, and hopefully a fresh start with league play is just the tonic this teams needs to begin playing to their potential.

Thanks for all the support, and I hope you can make it out to helm field Friday night. On another note the team will be holding a car wash for Cliff Hibbits, whose son is a F/S player on the team. It is from 12:00 – 4:30 at the upper parking lot on Saturday. Cliff was involved in a terrible accident when he was hit while walking by a car. He may well lose his leg. So if your car needs a wash please come out on Saturday.

Coach Cattolic

Wildcats fall just short of comeback

Despite being outplayed most of the evening, our team was able to keep the game close and have a chance to win the game in the final three minutes when we had the ball at the Eagles 11 yard line.

Ultimately, we were unable to complete a comeback from a 17-0 deficit in the first half. Again, big plays were our nemesis on this evening. Despite giving up the big play, we never gave up, and almost pulled out the win, but fell 3 points short, final score, Eagles 24 Wildcats 21.

Teva Brender and Kyle Kevorkian each caught TD passes from Nick Bawden, and Will scored on the ground. Tyler Perkins was stellar on defense leading the team with 13 tackles. Brent McCoy was outstanding on defense and special teams as he added a 61 yard kick-off return to start the comeback. Brent also recovered a muffed punt to set up the our second touchdown. Ricky Turnwall also recovered a fumble for the Cats.

The team has struggled a bit this preseason and we finished with a 1-2 record, however the losses were to Mitty and Oak Grove, both highly rated CCS teams. Although our performance is not where we want it to be, we are not far from that point either.

With a bye this week leading into the league season, we hope to get a weeks rest and get more players healthy and ready to play. It will be a very busy week for the team despite the bye, as we look to strengthen certain positions and get more consistent play from the team.

There are times when we look very good, but there are also times when we do not, as focus and discipline continue to be areas of concern. We must have focus and discipline to play with the good teams.

We open league play on the 28th with Homestead High School who is currently 2-0 and have an excellent opportunity to be 3-0 when we meet.

Fortunately, we are at home for the first two league games, and will see if the bye week can get us back on the right track. Thanks for all the support.

Coach Cattolico

Getting Ready for Oak Grove

This week we prepare for one of most the dominant teams on the east side of San Jose, the Oak Grove Eagles. They are a large school with many outstanding athletes. The offensive line averages about 265 pounds across the front, and they have tremendous speed at the skill positions. The Eagles have one of the best all around athletes in the Central Coast Section in #7 Chidobe Awuzie.

In their only game in this young season they beat St. Francis 21-20. Friday night will be our first time away from the friendly confines of Helm Field, and will be a very important game for the team. It is our chance to see if we can play with the very best in the section. I look for it to be a very good game.

The Cats have a bye week following this game, before we begin league play. As we move into the bye week we will have competed against three of the best teams in the CCS, so we should be well prepared for the rugged De Anza League schedule.

The boys know the importance of playing as a team, and are learning that each player on the field must execute his assignment or the whole team will fail, but we shall see if we can accomplish this task. Size, speed, and talent, do not necessarily make a great team; TEAMWORK makes a great team.

We always strive to teach players that they must sacrifice individual praise and glory for the good of the team. One person carries the ball, but it is the other ten who do all the work.

The game is at Oak Grove High School and will start at 7:00PM. Thanks for all the support, and I hope you can make it out for the game.

Coach Cattolico

A Stark Contrast to Last Week

The team played its second game Friday night and broke into the win column with a 42-6 victory over Menlo Atherton. Kyle Kevorkian got the Cats started with a 94 yard kick off return for a touchdown. Nick Bawden hit Teva Brender on a 22 yard TD pass on the first play following a Menlo-Atherton fumble, Logan Chapman converted both PAT’s and the team led 14-0 only one minute into the game.

It was a stark contrast to how we began the season last week. By the end of the first half, Bawden had thrown a TD pass to Chapman, and another to Kevorkian. Kyle also returned a punt for an 88 yard touchdown putting the Cats ahead 35-6.

The second half featured many players getting their first chance to see game action. Will Le, who finished the night as the team’s leading rusher ran for a TD to finish up the scoring. Brent McCoy, Cameron Perry, and Matt Etterman all had pass receptions. Greg Schwager stepped in at QB and was 3 for 3 passing.

Etterman, Le, Johhny Breidenthall, and Joey Wood all contributed running the ball. Jack Tittle and Tyler Perkins opened holes in the line with some great blocking from the fullback position. Nico Aimonetti, Kevin Tjon, Dave Fishman, Ricky Turnwall, Brendan Williams, and Alex Randolph all blocked well against a much bigger Menlo line.

The Cats defense was led by inside linebacker Tyler Perkins who had 11 tackles, 2 sacks, and recovered a fumble. Other defensive standouts were Kevin Tjon, Aimonetti, Brender, Tittle, Le, Mike Mahnoey, Brent McCoy, Wood, Bailey McNally, Kevorkian, Ty Doughty, Myles Morrison, Zack Wiley, Andrew Hilliard, Brendan Williams, Riley Carroll, Connor McKeen, Yenlin Lee, Cameron Ackerman, Cody Marshall, and Jack Jarnigan. It was a great team effort and the guys left the field feeling good about things are coming together.

There is a down side, Max Herman banged his knee and his status will not be known until he has an MRI later this week. Max is a team captain and one of the leaders of this team. He has been a major contributor to the team, and the program for four years, it will be tough not to have him.

Next week we travel to South San Jose to take on the powerhouse Oak Grove Eagles. This will be another serious test for this 2012 Wildcat team. Thanks for all the support,

Coach Cattolico and the Cats.

Getting On The Winning Track

This Friday night the Cats return to action versus Menlo-Atherton. Menlo beat El Camino 26 – 0 last week and are one of the favorites in the A league up on the peninsula.

This is a big test for the Cats coming off the loss to Mitty. We know we need to play better, execute well and get ourselves on the winning track. This game means a lot to the team and the boys have practiced as well as I have seen practice all year. We are ready, there can be no mental break downs, no excuses, and we’ll leave it all on the field.

Menlo on the other hand will see this game as a barometer and a chance to break a string of loses to Los Gatos. The contest will feature two outstanding lines, along with young untested players. It is a battle of two of the better teams in the section, and should be a great game.

So come on down to Helm Field for Friday night football as the Cats continue on one of the toughest preseason schedules in the section. It is time to show everyone how good this team can be, and see if we will get on the winning track.

Coach Cattolico