The Viking’s fall to the Milpitas Trojans 47-7 on Senior Night


Maddy Atwater

The six senior football players, six cheer and dance seniors, and their families pose for pictures in honor of their four years of commitment to Paly.

Maddy Atwater, Staff Writer

Playing with all odds against them, the Palo Alto Vikings received a brutal beating on Senior Night this Friday to the reigning Central Coast Section (CCS) Division one Champions, the Milpitas Trojans, with a final score of 47-7.

The Viking’s single touchdown was caught by Riley Schoeben (‘16) off of a 30-yard pass in the fourth quarter from quarterback Oliver Svirsky (‘16). Paly’s regular starting quarterback, Justin Hull (‘16), was out with a concussion, along with James Cohee (‘16), Tonga Latu (‘16) and Tony Caballero-Santana (‘16) who all faced a one-game suspension due to ejection from the team’s last game.

The Viking’s varsity football team is graduating six seniors this year: Chioke Bryant-Anderson (‘15), Felix Ibarra (‘15), Jaime Martinez (‘15), John Martinez (‘15), Jayshawn Puckett (‘15) and Thomas Wilcox (‘15).

“Our seniors stepped up and they were trying their hardest,” Svirsky said. “I was working for them and I know many of our teammates were.”

The Trojans first possession of the game resulted in a touchdown after a 29-yard pass. The Vikings followed with a good run, but could not seal the play and Milpitas regained possession with around 4:00 minutes left in the first quarter. Before the end of the first quarter, the Trojans were able to score once more making it 14-0 heading into the second.

Paly had the ball to start the quarter, but the Vikings could not manage to score. As the home team’s defense struggled, the Trojans slowly moved down the filed and scored with 4:11 remaining in the half. The game was filled with penalties called on both teams, totaling to 16 flags: five against the Vikings with the remaning 11 called on the Trojans. After the Milpitas touchdwon, Paly regained control but fumbled on the first down. The Trojans then were able to score another touchdown and hold the Vikings scoreless for the remainder of the half.

“In the words of Mr. Colombo, ‘You don’t lose a game on Friday, you lose Monday through Thursday’,” Halas said. “We had six starters out from the previous game and that’s what we are more disappointed with: the week of preparation rather than the actual gameday.”

To start the second half, the Vikings were down 27-0, but had possession of the ball. Svirsky was sacked for a loss of 13 yards and the team was forced to punt the ball on fourth down. The trojan’s initial touchdwon was called back, but on the second play after that, they were able to score once again making the score 34-0. In efforts to gain momentum, Paly’s offense attempted to throw the ball, but thr Trojan’s were able to block Svirsky’s pass and recover the ball on the 11-yard line. With two flags and a five-yard run, the Trojans were able to score once more causing a solemn score of 41-0 with about 5:00 left in the third quarter. To end a rough third quarter, Charlie Munoz (‘16) was able to force a fumble recovered by Mikey Grandy (‘16), allowing the Viking’s to have possession of the ball to start the third quarter.

“They are a good team,” Puckett said. “ Im glad that we all kept playing with heart and just kept trying to make something happen.”

The fourth quarter seemed promising as the Vikings gained 35-yards inlcuding a 14-yard pass from Svirsky to Schoeben, but a pass was intercepted with three minutes left and returned to the 35-yard line. On the very next play, the Trojans ran 64-yard for their final touchdown of the game, making the score 47-0. With 18 seconds left on the clock, Svirsky was able to sneak a touchdown pass to Schoeben to end the game. Senior Night finished with a score of 47-7.

Going into their final week of league play, the team and coaches all look to work hard in practice in preparation for facing Saratoga on Friday, November 14 at Saratoga High School.

“I want a full squad at practice, every single kid at film, at practice buying in and we will coach their butts off,” Halas said. “ If they all show up everyday this week, we are going to be just fine.”