Spartans lose to San Diego High Cavers in CIF playoff

SPARTAN QUARTER BACK (#11) cocks back to chuck one down field against the Cavers in the Division IV CIF semi-final.
Courtesy Photo

SAN DIEGO – For week 14 of CIF playoffs, the Central High School Spartans traveled to a neutral site to face off against the San Diego High School Cavers Friday as the Cavers came from behind to win over the Spartans with a score of 26-22.

In the first quarter of play, the Cavers’ offense took to the field after stopping the Spartans cold and grabbed an opportunity with a drive to the the Spartan 20-yard line. With a first down play, Cavers quarterback Jayden Wickware  threw a 21-yard pass to Thomas Marcus, who took it the rest of the way for a touchdown. After a missed extra-point attempt, the Cavers were up on the Spartans 6-0.

The Cavers kicked off to the Spartans who returned the ball to their own 47-yard line. Eager to answer back, Spartans quarterback Deniro Osuna connected with Tyrese Marsh for a 42-yard pass, and Marsh ran the remaining five yards for a touchdown. After a successful extra-point kick, the Spartans had the lead by one.

Following the kickoff, the Cavers had no luck moving down field and were forced to punt on a fourth down. With no luck themselves, the Spartans closed out the first quarter with another punt to the Cavers.

The Cavers took control of the ball at the start of the second quarter and tried to score early with a long run by Raiden Hunter who carried the ball to the Spartans 49-yard line.  Although armed with a fresh set of downs, the Spartans held the Cavers to a third down play where they sacked the Cavers’ quarterback in the backfield with a take down by Spartan Angel Nava-Esparza. The Cavers would punt on the fourth down back to the Spartans.

With the ball on the Central’s 30-yard line, the Spartans’ Osuna received the snap and threw a 31-yard pass to Thadeo Campbell, bringing the ball to the Cavers’ 31-yard line. Central followed up with a run by Nava-Esparza, putting the Spartans inside the 20-yard line. On the next play, the ball was given to Nava-Esparza again, who carried it six yards and into the end zone.

The remainder of the first half was scoreless, and the Spartans headed into the locker room up with a score of 14-6.

In the third quarter, the Spartans kicked off to the Cavers for a long return that brought San Diego High to the Spartans’ 49-yard line. One the next play, they handed off to Hunter, who took the ball to just inside the Spartans’ 20-yard line. On the following play, the Cavers handed the ball off to Hunter again, who ran a 12-yard rushing touchdown. After a failed two-point attempt, the Cavers kicked off to the Spartans ahead with a 14-12 score.

The Spartans managed to return the ball to their own 40-yard line, and on the first play of the drive, Osuna went deep down field for a completed pass to Marsh. With a new set of downs, the Spartans handed the ball to Jonathan Medina for a 6-yard rushing touchdown. The Spartans followed up with a successful two-point conversion that brought the score to 22-12 to end the third quarter.

But the fourth quarter held surprises as the Spartans were unable to move down the field to score, while the Cavers managed to put up 14 more points to walk away with a score of 26-22 and the win.