BRAWLEY -The Brawley Wildcats 2013 season came to an end versus the Mission Bay Buccaneers on Friday evening. Ironically, the game was played at Clairemont High School that was less than three miles from last yearâ€™s semifinals fog bowl.
This year the fog wasnâ€™t invited, but light interval rains decided to crash the party at pregame.
Wildcat fans traveled through windy conditions all the way to the battlefield hoping to cheer on a win that would lead them to a rematch against Madison. Unfortunately, the Buccaneers felt they were entitled to second shot at the Warhawks after a big loss to them earlier this season. When it was all said and done, Brawleyâ€™s season would end in a 41-16 loss.
After a scoreless first quarter, it didnâ€™t appear the game would turn into a high scoring affair by either team. Brawley held Mission Bay to minimal yardage, while the Wildcats had two of their first 3 drive drives deep into Buccaneer territory, but were only able to muster up 3 points.
On Brawleyâ€™s third possession Remington Campbell kicked Brawley into a 3-0 lead on a 29 yard field goal with 8:11 left in the second quarter.
Unfortunately, the Brawley score woke up the sleeping giant and the Buccaneers returned the favor on an eight-play drive that began on their 31 yard line. Two big passes during the drive by B Nicholas Plum foreshadowed what the rest of the game would be like. With 4:55 left in the half, Plum connected on a 29 yard pass and with the PAT good the Buccaneers lead 7-3.
Ball control and rare turnovers the past ten games contributed to Brawleyâ€™s success this season, but on the second play of their next drive disaster struck as a mishandled pitch fell into the hands of a Buccaneer, and he was in the end zone 18 yards later.
In the blink of an eye, the Cats were down 14-3 with 4:01 left to halftime.
Mission Bay didnâ€™t wait to make adjustments until halftime, as was evident on Brawleyâ€™s next drive.
Spreading their defense to prevent the Wildcatâ€™s effective outside pitches, Brawley was forced to punt with 1:45 left in the second quarter.
The Buccaneers used six plays in just under 90 seconds to travel 73 yards and they were ahead at halftime, 20-3, on another TD pass, this one from 39 yards out.
Coaches and the Wildcat fans got what was desperately needed to begin the second half. The defense had forced a Mission Bay punt with 10:35 left in the third quarter. This inspired the offense as it only took five plays to go 57 yards for another Wildcat touchdown. The big play on the drive was a Ross Rubio to Donavin Buck connection that refereesâ€™ spotted at the one foot line. Two plays later, Issak Comparan was in the end zone with 8:42 left in the third and the Wildcats were down 20-9 after a rare failed point after.
It only took Mission Bay three plays to cover 45 yards after a great 50 yard kickoff return. A TD pass from Plum this time was from 33 yards out and the lead increased to 27-9 at the 7:08 point of the third quarter.
Â Down by eighteen points and having to play catch up for three quarters, the Wildcats had yet another impressive drive. This possession began at their 30 yard line, used eleven plays and brought the clock down to 1:50 in the third quarter. Ross Rubio punched it in on a QB keeper of 6 yards to get the score to 27-16.
Â With the third quarter coming to a close, the Wildcats had a big sack on the last play bringing up a crucial 3rd and 8 for the Buccaneers on the Brawley 45 yard line. A pass by Plum on the first play of the fourth all but shattered any thoughts of forcing a punt and took the ball to the Wildcat 8 yard line.
They scored two plays later. With 10:45 left in the game the score increased to 34-16. The final scoring for the game was a Buccaneerâ€™s 7 play drive of 47 yards. The 41-16 lead was at the 5:27 mark of the fourth quarter.
Neither team scored again after each had two more possessions.
The final record for the Brawley Wildcats this season was 8-3.
Its defense produced three shutouts, including the Bell Game, and seven games allowing a touchdown or less.
Although many seniors played key roles in the Wildcats success this season, we should be seeing just as good teams, if not better, in the next few years.
Our JV (9-0-1) and Freshmen (10-0) teams both finished undefeated this year. Keep an eye out for the â€œWrap Upâ€ of the entire season on this website. Thank You Coaches and Players for a great season.