Pointer season ends with second-half Pirate barrage
by SCOTT HOPKINS
Published - 11/23/17 - 08:03 AM | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Sophomore running back Gromyko Green should emerge as a top Pointer player next year. Green is listed as 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighs only 135 pounds, but is very fast and able to make tacklers miss. / PHOTO BY CAMERON MAEVA
Sophomore running back Gromyko Green should emerge as a top Pointer player next year. Green is listed as 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighs only 135 pounds, but is very fast and able to make tacklers miss. / PHOTO BY CAMERON MAEVA
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A second half barrage of points by Oceanside High put an end to playoff hopes for Point Loma's Pointers last Friday on Bennie Edens field.

A high-scoring first half saw the No. 4 seeded Pointers trot to their locker room at the break up by a 28-21 score and hoping to maintain a strong offense that was keeping up with a fast No. 5 seeded Pirate offense.

But that wasn't to be as the Pirates solved the Pointer defense for 31 second half points while the Dogs could only muster one fourth quarter touchdown as the visitors headed back up the coast with a 51-35 victory and a meeting with familiar rival El Camino in the Div. I semifinal.

With the loss, the Dogs dropped to 6-5 on the season, an improvement on last year's 5-7 mark.

"The game started off the way we had planned," said Pointer head coach Mike Hastings. "A great opening drive and early lead. But we couldn't stop Oceanside and the game became a back-and-forth battle."

Indeed, it was a four-yard run by big senior Mathew Fa'alele that opened scoring in the game.

After the Pirates answered, it was senior quarterback Kyle Grady's 36-yard run that gave the Pointers a 14-7 lead after one quarter.

Each team scored twice before halftime, with Oceanside's scores coming on a 59-yard pass and one-yard run.

The Pointers kept the lead on a 65-yard pass play from Grady to junior JL Skinner and a 45-yard pass to senior Malik Moore.

"We felt confident at the half, taking a seven-point lead into the third quarter." Hastings said.  "But we were unable to sustain our offensive momentum and Oceanside was able to make several big plays that made the difference in the outcome."

Indeed, the third quarter is one that will long haunt the memories of Pointer players and coaches as the Pirates came out and devastated the Pointer defense for 20 unanswered points to take a 41-28 lead into the final frame.

Fittingly, it was a one-yard run by Josh Ball who scored the final Pointer touchdown that brought the Dogs within 41-35 in the fourth quarter. Ball was the team's leader in rushing, gaining many of his yards after first contact by defenders.

But Oceanside came back to crush any hopes the Pointers may have had with another long scoring play and a late field goal for 10 more points and the final margin.

For the game, the Dogs posted some impressive numbers including 494 net yards in offense, an average of 7.2 yards per play.

Quarterback Grady, who made great improvement this season, went out with a flourish by completing 15 of 23 passes for 260 yards and the two touchdowns with no interceptions.

Skinner caught four balls for 110 yards and Moore snared four for 82 yards while Ball caught three for 37.

Grady also led the ground game with 10 carries for 65 yards. Ball (11 for 49), Gromyko Green (2 for 35), Johkyreian Shealey (2 for 31), Kaden Gill (4 for 30), Moore (3 for 18) and Brian Yepez (3 for 15) had the bulk of carries that totaled 263 yards.

Each team had one turnover, with senior defensive standout Michael Blakely's interception of a Pirate pass attempt ending a late drive.

Gill led all defenders with four tackles followed by senior Anthony Karty, Skinner, Fa'alele and Grady with three apiece. Christian Terzoli and senior Davey Folsom each had a pair.

Terzoli also was credited with a quarterback sack with senior Josh Fierro and Karty sharing a half sack each.

Seniors playing their final game in a Pointer jersey include Grady, Blakely, Moore, Karty, Ball, Fa'alele, Yepez, Fierro, Folsom, Alexander Xykis, Austin Haines, Carlos Amarrillaz, Anthony Martinez, Casey Purselley, Jack Early, Meshach Epperley, CJ Haywood, Camden Koolen, Miguel Rodriguez and Hunter Bell.

The Pointers' annual team banquet is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 18 at Tom Ham's Lighthouse restaurant on Harbor Island.

And as for the 2018 season? Pointer coaches are already making plans for next season  and how to best utilize a total of 17 varsity returnees plus others on the junior varsity or freshman teams who exhibited the ability to make the jump.

After all, the next season kicks off in only nine months!

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