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December 11, 2023

Gavilan Loses Season Finale to San Jose on Game’s Final Play

The San Jose Jaguars snapped a nine-game losing streak Saturday
night by edging the Gavilan Rams 34-33 in the football finale for
both clubs on the winners
’ turf.
n By bob Burch

Staff writer

San Jose – The San Jose Jaguars snapped a nine-game losing streak Saturday night by edging the Gavilan Rams 34-33 in the football finale for both clubs on the winners’ turf.

The Rams went for two points after a touchdown with 29 seconds left. A Matt Virus pass to Shane Butcher fell incomplete, leaving the Rams at 2-3 in Coast Conference action and 3-7 overall.

Gavilan pounded out 455 yards in total offense, featuring 113 yards rushing by Melvin Bryant and 211 yards passing by Virus.

San Jose City countered with three touchdown passes from Steve Kelley to Tom Bingham to stay even with the visitors’ offensive punch.

The Jaguars shook off a 10-0 deficit after one quarter to take a 14-13 lead into the fourth quarter. The pace quickened in the last 15 minutes, generating a total of 40 points.

The Rams came up with 10 points in the first quarter on a Tony Castaneda 37-yard field goal and a 21-yard touchdown toss from Virus to stalwart Shane Butcher.

The Jaguars scored on a 25-yard Kelley-Bingham connection with 8:30 to go in the half, Daryl Nero adding the PAT. Castaneda completed the scoring for the half with a 33-yard field goal with 14 seconds left.

Kelley found Bingham open for a six-yard TD with 4:04 left in the third quarter as the Jags took a 14-13 lead.

The Jaguars began the six-TD fourth quarter with a 30-yard interception return by lineman Chris Williams. Nero’s kick was blocked to leave the Rams down 20-13 with 14:51 to play.

Gavilan responded with a two-yard Daniel Salinas paydirt rush to tie the game at 20-20 with 12:00 to go.

San Jose took advantage of a 78-yard kick-off return to set up a one-yard TD run by Coby Calhoun. Gavilan squared the game with 6:51 showing when Virus covered 48 yards to Ricky Mhoon.

The Jaguars followed with an 87-yard TD drive that an 18-yard Bingham catch from Kelley capped with 3:06 to go. The Rams covered 67 yards in less than three minutes to draw within one point, 34-33, on a Salinas TD grab from 16 yards out.

Salinas finished with 73 yards on six rushes, including a 55-yard effort. Virus hit on 15 of 33 tries with three TDs and one interception. Butcher turned seven catches into 112 yards.

The Rams lost three fumbles, the Jaguars one.

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