Following a touchdown that pulled Gregori to within a point with 38 seconds to play, coach Jason McCoy eschewed a potential game-tying PAT – even after a delay of game penalty – and went for the win.
Junior quarterback Bobby Avina, who moments earlier hit Tony Cristobal with a 4-yard toss, hooked up with Antonio Castillo for the two-pointer that gave the Jaguars a 29-28 come-from-behind victory Friday at Don Lanphear Stadium.
“I got some of Timmy Garcia’s mojo,” said McCoy, referring to the Davis head coach, whose team pulled out wins in the first two weeks of the season in the final moments. “Actually, that penalty kind of helped us out because it pushed us back with our pass scheme … a little more room.”
Gregori squandered a 13-0 halftime lead and trailed 21-13 after the Gauchos (1-2) scored 21 unanswered points in the third quarter. El Cap got touchdown passes of 36 and 64 yards from the brother combo of quarterback Kevin Reid and receiver Elijah Reid, and an 80-yard scoop-and-score by safety Gordon Harris.
After the Jaguars tied the score on Adrian Leal’s 45-yard punt return, and a two-point conversion run by Avina, the Gauchos reclaimed the advantage when the Reid brothers hooked up for a third scoring strike, this one from 12 yards out, to make it 28-21 with less than five minutes to play.
Gregori marched to El Cap’s 36 before the drive stalled and it turned the ball over on downs. The Gauchos were just a first down away from icing the game, but Lucas Schwartz stripped the ball away from Harris and Jace Tessaro pounced on the ball at EC’s 45 with 1:10 to play.
Avina was virtually perfect on the final driving, completing 4 for 5 passes – the lone incompletion came when he spiked the ball to stop the clock – for 41 yards.
“We practice day in and day out, one-minute drills, two-minute drills, getting the ball quick, spiking the ball,” said Avina, who completed his first nine passes of the contest. “And we just executed. Simply, we executed every play. It was a great drive.”