A second-half comeback fell 12 points short in a battle of undefeated community college football teams in Los Altos Hills on Saturday night.
The Foothill College Owls jumped out to a 27-0 lead and then held on for a 32–20 win over the Reedley College Tigers In a battle of the two top American Division teams in Northern California.
After falling behind early as Foothill took advantage of three Tiger turnovers, Reedley was forced to go to the air. Quarterback Bubba Hickson, who was benched in the first half after losing a fumble (a second lost fumble was credited to the team), threw touchdown passes in the second half to River Walker (2 yards), Chris Zavala (6 yards) and Andy Pierre-Antoine (26 yards). Tight end Daniel Baca was Reedley's leading receiver with five receptions for 77 yards.
But Foothill recorded five quarterback sacks for a loss of 35 yards. Reedley finished with the net rushing total of -18 yards.
Third down conversions were a problem again with Reedley converting just one of eight.
The Reedley defense gave up four touchdown passes (three by starting quarterback Cam Rottier but intercepted three passes, two by Tevin Fordham and one by Paul Moreno.
It was the first regular-season loss for Reedley since 2017, as the Tigers came into the contest with 13 wins in their last 14 games.
The Tigers went into the contest as the highest-scoring team in the state. With the 20-point performance, they dropped to fifth place.
"I'm proud of the way our team competed all night," said Tiger head coach Eric Marty. "But you can't start slow and turn the ball over on the road and we did exactly like that. Tough night, tough lessons. But we'll learn from it, grow and get better as we head into conference play."
Now, the 3-1 Tigers will concentrate on winning a Golden Coast Conference title. Next Saturday, Reedley will open conference action as they travel to Aptos to face a 3-0 Carrillo College Seahawks squad. Last Saturday, Cabrillo rolled to a 27-3 win over Hartnell in Salinas. The Seahawks have now outscored the competition 86-17.
Monterey Peninsula is also 3-0 overall after opening conference play with a 45-0 win over a 1-3 Gavilan squad.
A conference championship could mean a rematch with Foothill in the postseason.
By: Will Goldbeck