PLEASANTON – Jake Goldsworthy felt the Amador Valley High School football team wasn’t getting enough respect ahead of its game against undefeated Monte Vista Friday night.
If that was the case before, that should change now after the standout senior running back and the Dons notched their biggest win of the young season.
The 6-foot-1, 210-pound Goldsworthy rushed for 227 yards and three touchdowns as 16th-ranked Amador Valley, powered by a huge second quarter, outlasted No. 12 Monte Vista 41-34 in front of a raucous crowd almost full to bursting. celebrating the school’s centenary.
With his team trailing by 14 early in the second quarter, Goldsworthy raced down the sideline for a 64-yard touchdown that changed the momentum of the game, as Amador Valley (3-1) reached the end zone three more times before halftime to take a lead. 28-21 and never hang around again.
“We wanted this game so bad,” said Goldsworthy, whose other touchdowns came on runs of 20 and 75 yards. “We were being overlooked by every source and I really took that to heart. It was personal this week.
The 41 points the Dons scored were 14 more than they had totaled in their first three games combined in a one-touchdown loss to El Cerrito and close wins over Campolindo and Acalanes.
“We know we can run the ball. We’re physical,” Amador Valley coach Danny Jones said. “So we know we can change the weather a little bit. Tonight was crazy. We didn’t expect to put 41 on the board.
Amador Valley will close out non-league play next week against rival Foothill, then begin East Bay Athletic League Valley Division play at home against Dougherty Valley on Oct. 6. At that point, promising junior quarterback Tristan Ti’a, who transferred from Granada, will be eligible. play.
“We’ve kind of been the underdogs every week,” Jones said. “We know we have a really good football team, but people want to keep counting us out because we don’t have the quarterback yet, and when we get the quarterback back, it’s gone, man. Because he’s special and we’re excited about that.
Monte Vista (3-1) racked up more than 250 yards of offense in the first half, mostly thanks to the arm of quarterback Brayden Turner, but halted its own momentum by throwing two interceptions and losing a fumble.
Three plays after Dons senior Nate Jetter intercepted Turner and returned it to the Monte Vista 25, Ben Stout caught a 14-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Aidan Foley with 34 seconds left in the second quarter .
That put Amador Valley ahead by a touchdown and capped a stretch in which the Dons scored four times in just over 10 minutes, putting Monte Vista behind for the first time this season.
“We obviously weren’t as tough on defense in the first half,” Monte Vista coach Johnny Millard said. “(Amador Valley) did a good job of sticking to its bread and butter and we didn’t rise to the challenge at times. Then, turning the ball over doesn’t help in fairly inopportune moments.
“The difference in this game is a few plays and when you play good football teams, that’s usually the case.”
One of those came with just under 10 minutes left in the fourth quarter when Amador Valley took a two-touchdown lead. Facing fourth-and-10 from the Monte Vista 36, Foley, on a screen pass, found Jetter, who danced through several defenders before reaching the end zone for a 41-27 lead.
Jones said the Dons debated what to do on fourth down.
“We went back and forth three different times on what we were going to call,” Jones said. “I told Jetter what we were going to call, but from a different formation. Jet, reluctantly. I said, “Coach, I don’t like it,” and I said, “It’s okay, it’s a safe throw for Foley and if we get tackled, it’s no big deal.” But it finally hit. »
Millard lamented the mistakes, but the Mustangs trailed by just seven points when they got the ball back with 2:28 left in the fourth quarter. Turner drove the ball to midfield, but on fourth-and-15, running back Julian McMahan was stopped three yards short of first down with just under a minute to play.
Amador Valley took over and, with Monte Vista out of time, ran out of time to improve its winning streak to three games.
“Our defense has been crazy all season,” Goldsworthy said. “We put together teams week after week and it was just amazing.”