Football team in black uniforms running onto the field

Pittsburg Defeats Amador Valley in Opening Round of NCS Division 1 Playoffs

Football team in black uniforms running onto the field

Led out by No. 1 Jewelous Walls, the Pittsburg Pirates run onto the field before their playoff match against the Amador Valley Dons.

Story and photos by Juan Cebreiros

The Pittsburg High Pirates defeated the Amador Valley Dons 41-14 on Nov. 10 in their opening match of North Coast Section Division 1 playoffs.

Coming in, the Dons had not turned the ball over in their past four games. On this day, turnovers killed their chances.

On two of their first three drives, Amador Valley fumbled the ball away to give short-field opportunities to the Pirates. Running back Jamar Searcy ran in Pittsburg’s first touchdown, but it was the Pirates’ second touchdown that swung the momentum of the game.

The Dons looked to tie the score at seven as they marched the ball down to the Pittsburg 35-yard line. Quarterback Tristan Tia was stripped of the ball on a sack and Pirates’ linebacker Japheth Tofaeono recovered and ran the football 65 yards back for a touchdown to turn a scoring chance for Amador Valley into a 14-0 lead for the Pirates.

“It was a screen pass, and the defensive lineman read it well,” Tia said. “He sat on it, and there was nowhere to go.”


While the Dons’ offense sputtered, their defense kept them within striking distance in the first half. The defense forced numerous punts and turnovers on downs to keep the game within two scores. In the second half, however, Amador Valley’s defense broke down and surrendered 27 points.

“Our defense has been phenomenal all year long,” Jones said. “I feel like when we turned the ball over offensively, that killed us.”

The Dons kept close with the Pirates in the first half. However, a second half scoring frenzy from Pittsburg High and costly turnovers from the Amador Valley offense put the game out of reach.

Pittsburg kicked off their scoring in the second half with an 85-yard double pass to receiver Mekari Kenion to extend their lead to 21-0. Amador Valley head coach Danny Jones said the trick play caught his defense off guard and killed some of the team’s momentum to start the second half.

“It was a great play by them, great call, but that hurt,” Jones said.


Amador Valley’s offense didn’t put their first points on the board until nine minutes remained in regulation.

With the opening round playoff loss, the Amador Valley Dons season ends with another first-round playoff exit. The Dons have not won a playoff game since 2017 when they defeated Deer Valley High School 26-13 in the opening round of the NCS playoffs.

Pittsburg’s season will continue on into the NCS Division 1 semifinals. The Pirates are set to play the California High Grizzlies on Nov. 19 at home. The Grizzlies defeated the Clayton Valley Charter Ugly Eagles 31-24 also on Nov. 10. The Pirates and Grizzlies battled earlier this season at Pittsburg High with the Pirates getting the best of the Grizzlies in a close 38-35 affair.

No Comments

Post A Comment

Enjoy our content?