BVH varsity football’s rocky start to the season


Anissa Barajas

On Aug. 19 the Bonita Vista High (BVH) football team played their first game of the season against Morse High School (MHS). MHS kicks an extra point as BVH prepares to do a PAT block.

Isabella Garcia and William Maywood

On Aug. 19, a cold and brisky Friday night, Bonita Vista High’s (BVH) varsity football team played their first game of the season at Morse High School (MHS). BVH played a difficult season opener with a lopsided loss of 38-0 to MHS. 

The game began with BVH giving up 80 yards in the first drive to a series of quick screen passes by MHS. Initially, this picked up the tempo and caught BVH off-guard; resulting in a 50 yard passing touchdown with a score of 7-0. Cornerback and senior Daniel Kabongo explains how an unbalanced score affects the turnout of the game and its outcome for the team as there has to be a conjoined mentality to make a comeback. 

“When they [MHS] scored the first time it was a bad call, but you gotta keep the momentum [and] keep your foot in the grass,” Kabongo said.

BVH’s first drive they converted a first down,then fumbled the ball. Thereafter, MHS moved the chains downfield and went for the first down on a fourth and seven, which they did not convert. In BVH’s second drive, MHS got a safety resulting in 9-0. Following that, MHS received the ball on the punt. The ball went downfield as they ran in a 32 yard touchdown with a two point conversion. That ended the first quarter with Morse jumping out to an early 17-0 lead. 

Head Football Coach and Athletics Director Tyler Arciaga shared how he wanted players to play the best they could during the game. Inturn, he encouraged a positive mentality and stressed the importance of working towards one goal. 

“I addressed the team about this: which guys play hard every play? When the chips are down and you have a team that’s just beating you, what do you do?” Arciaga said. “I think that will be a big take away, an eye opener and that’s why we film [the game to study and improve on]”

The second quarter began as BVH started their third drive with a few incomplete passes downfield, but were forced to punt after 3 downs. On MHS’s second play of their fourth drive, they scored over a 60 yard touchdown with a two point conversion resulting in a score of 25-0. In the fourth drive, BVH’s passing game continued to improve with a 40 yard pass downfield. There were several noticeable second half adjustments from the team that had begun to show in the plays, distinctively in the defense. 

“Around the first and second quarter, we played a lot of zone coverage which wasn’t working because they [MHS] were running underneath us. So we played man to man, pressed the coverage [and] we changed the defensive scheme a lot,” Kabongo said. 

BVH’s fifth drive stalls out to a sack by MHS. MHS’s sixth drive consisted of the same turnover on downs after pushing the ball downfield. BVH’s sixth drive turned the ball over on downs after also moving the ball downfield. MHS’s seventh drive had a number of big plays in the air and ground, capped off by a 40 yard touchdown with a Point After Touchdown (PAT) made. The score at half time was 32-0 and to add, Offensive Lineman and junior Aaron Bautista was injured. Unfortunately, Bautista wasn’t the only player who faced an injury during the game. Wide receiver and junior Julian Ramirezinjured his arm.

“It’s always sad to see a teammate go down. But, we always have to play hard regardless of who we lose. We [have to] get the best man up next and play through that. [We] just come together as a team to overcome them,” said Slot Receiver, Cornerback and senior Isaiah Chappell. 

The third quarter started with BVH receiving the second half kickoff. They started to drive with runs, but were forced to punt again. MHS’s eighth drive was methodical, converting third downs and moving the chains. MHS closed off with a 20 yard touchdown and a failed PAT leaving the score at 38-0.

This week [the team is] really hoping to improve on the defense. We can’t give up 38 points like we did, [we need to] fix the mental mistakes on offense and overall play a good game with as little mistakes as possible,” Chapelle added. 

The final quarter began with runs by MHS. Following two bad snaps, BVH recovered the ball. After a few possession changes, the game  came to an end one minute early due to Offensive Lineman and junior Zachary Stuckey injuring his wrist. 

“Everybody in our own program—myself, our coaches, all the players—can do a better job of preparing for our next opponent. We have bi-week [one week in the season where the team doesn’t play a game] and then we go and play in San Francisco at Sequoia High School. That’ll be a good test for us to see if we can rebound and get back on track,” Arciaga said.

Although the varsity football season found itself on an unexpected start, Arciaga hopes this early bi-week comes as a fresh start to the season. He also believes the game served as a valuable learning experience for the team. Arciaga mentions that the game will ultimately help players with mental fortitude as they continue throughout the season. 

“I think this is a good opportunity for the kids. It’s a test to see how they react under adverse error. It’s easy to act good, be juvel and be a good teammate when things are going good,” Arciaga said. “But how do you react when things don’t go the way that you want? [The] true test of being a really good teammate is, can you weather the storm and pick up your teammates when things are down?”

This piece was updated on September 5, 2022.