Freedom vs. Cal San Ramon NCS Playoff Captured

Freedom High of Oakley and Cal High San Ramon squared off in the first round of NCS Div 1 on Friday night, Nov. 18th.

A thrilling game, filled with drama and back and forth battles. The home team Falcons, who, after a having been down 28-13, stormed all the way back with a TD, point after, a Field Goal, another TD (game winner).

But that wasn’t all. Leading by 1 point (29-28) with 3:50 on the clock, the Falcons also needed a 4th quarter interception, and lastly, a blocked FG as the last 7 seconds burned off the clock to hold off the Grizzlies who drove it all the way down near their 15 yard line.

A disappointment for Cal which could not assert its ground game, aside from some killer plays by Armani Washington (#3) (what I thought would be dominant) and whose defense–like on other occasions this year– could not stop Freedom’s offense; a mix of wildcat, shotgun and other plays from highly effective offensive sets. But both teams gave maximum effort and great result.

The winning points came on a QB run by Stephen Rodriguez (a last moment stand in for the hurt starter) and kicker Anthony Cantabrana (pictured below) whose kick with 3:42 left was the final necessary point.

The real star of the game with a pair of TDs and the HUGE interception was #5 Darrell Daniels; This guy was a gamer.

IF YOU LIKE A PIC, CLICK IT TO SEE MUCH HIGHER RESOLUTION

First play for the Falcons

#5 Jerrell Dunn tackles #5 Darrell Daniels

#5 Darrell Daniels has no quit

Cal’s Jerrell Dunn #5 takes a first quarter hand-off

Cal got its ground game off early as it went up 14-0 before the Falcons could respond.

Cal QB Cameron Owen (#15) Launches pass to the end zone

Shane Haley (#8) for Cal breaks the ice on scoring with first TD.

Freedom’s first drive, down 7-0.

RB/DB “do it all” Darrell Daniels #5 around end.

Before half a Falcon looks on

Freedom’s RB Joe Mixon (#20) around left side.

Freedom’s Malik Jackson (#24) flies in for the stop

#5 Jerrell Dunn faces the music, right into the back of #45. OUCH.

Freedom’s head coach, dealing with the stress of ‘win” or “out’ NCS D1.

All things in order for the new QB, Stephen Rodriguez

Cal’s second TD drive, RB Brian Krause (#27) on the move

Brian Krause on track around the left side

Up 14-0, Cal’s D crowds ball carriers

Darell Daniels (#5) Runs Tough as LB Kevin Leathley (#54) closes in

Darell Daniels (#5) plucks his way towards the goal line

Falcon’s (#5) Darrell Daniesl hits paydirt; Freedom on the board with a TD

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Falcon’s #4 Jordan Sheppard eludes Cal S Nicco Mendietta (#45)

#5 Darrell Daniels takes a wildcat snap

A critical first down by (#4) Jordan Sheppard of Freedom to pull the Falcons closer

Second half TD and the come back is on. Believe it was QB Stephen Rodriquez (#2)

#2 Stephen Rodriguez takes the snap.

the SPY, Darrell Daniels sees an errant pass in the 4th Quarter.

The SNAG, INT by Daniels keeps it away from #3 Armani Washington

The Celebration, just after the biggest INT ever; Rodriguez #2 points to the sky

Frustration – Cal’s Armani Washington after the turn-over as Falcons gather up.

Now with the ball in 4th quarter, Falcons work to close the deal

Cal is not out of it yet, Coach Eric Billeci looking for focus

#5 Darrell Daniels would not be denied survival.

What would be the game winning extra point

Cal’s back up QB Cameron Owen *#15) sparks a desperation drive, a critical gain.

The last second FG try by Cal is amazingly blocked

Loose ball, no time, means game over, Freedom 29, Cal 28.

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An incredible celebration as the Falcons know how tough the win was.

Frozen, on a cold night, Freedom travels to Concord next to meet the Spartans

To the victor go the spoils; media interview for Darrell Daniels with Cal Hi Sports

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