Pessy, defense pace Falcons to rout Arcadia

With Julian Craig clearing his path, quarterback Harry Pessy takes the ball in for the point. Photo by Greg COOK
With Julian Craig clearing his path, quarterback Harry Pessy takes the ball in for the point. Photo by Greg COOK

By Brian PARK

CV Weekly intern

Looking to end their regular season on a positive note, the Falcons feasted on a struggling Arcadia team winning 42-13 on Thursday night. Sporting new light blue uniforms, the Falcons ended their season with seven wins, three losses, and third place in the league standings.

The Falcons won the toss and chose to receive the ball first, but Arcadia forced a three and out situation. The Falcons punted, but the ball bounced back 20 yards to give Arcadia good field position at the 36 yard line. The defense took over and showed its strength, forcing a turnover on downs.

Quarterback Kyle Cota was then picked on the first play of the possession, with Arcadia bringing the ball to the 11 yard line before being taken down. The Apaches scored two plays later, jumping out to an early 7-0 lead.

The Falcons got their offense rolling after the Arcadia score. Harry Pessy bore the workload in the first scoring drive, carrying the ball five times for 51 yards and a touchdown.

The Falcon defense, obviously not happy about letting Arcadia score, came back out on the field with a renewed focus.

Holding the Apaches to few yards, Dai Dai McFadden intercepted the Arcadia quarterback at the 35 yard line, leaving 65 yards to go.

The Falcons started the next possession with a bad snap, losing seven yards to start with a second down and 17 yards to go. Cota then took matters into his own hands and ran for a gain of 17 yards and a first down at the Arcadia 45 yard line. Pessy maintained the momentum with consecutive runs of 14 and 15 yards respectively. Cota ran the ball for four yards, then the ball was put back into Pessy’s hands. He then ran for a 21 yard touchdown, giving Crescenta Valley the lead at 14-7.

Again the Falcon defense outplayed the Arcadia offense, getting the ball back for the dominant offense with plenty of time to score left in the half.

The Falcons received the punt at the 36 yard line, leaving 64 yards to the endzone. Pessy ineffectively ran the ball twice for three yards, creating a third-and-long situation. Forced to pass, Cota threw a perfect pass into the hands of receiver Nick Ruiz for a gain of 18 yards. After two more plays in which yards could not be gained, Cota came through again. He passed to Mike Bako for another first down. Testing the Apache secondary, Cota threw deep to the endzone, but the pass was incomplete. But that didn’t discourage the quarterback – Cota completed a pass to Bako for 12 yards, leaving 19 yards to go with 57 seconds left until halftime. Cota ran the ball for no gain, but then passed to Bako for nine yards. Harry Pessy capped the drive with a 10 yard touchdown run down the sideline to put the Falcons up 21-7 at the half.

Arcadia came out at the half and scored on their second possession but missed the extra point. The Falcons would make sure that their second touchdown would be their last.

After the Apache touchdown, Pessy fumbled and lost the ball on the first play of the possession. The Falcons forced a turnover of their own a play after that, with Tanner Hamilton picking off the Apache quarterback.

Showing confidence in his running back, the Falcon head coach decided to let Pessy carry the ball again, and the move paid off as he ran for 15 yards on the first play. Pessy carried the ball time and time again, getting the Falcons to the 21 yard line. Rignot finished the drive, running 21 yards for the touchdown, putting the Falcons up by 15 points.

Arcadia, having enough time on the clock to rally, were overpowered by the CV defensive line. Sam Campbell and Bryan Luna each had a sack apiece, forcing a turnover on downs and crushing any hopes of an Arcadia win.

The Falcons didn’t slow down, scoring twice in the final four minutes on a 28 yard touchdown catch by Bako a touchdown catch by Andrew Carcich, putting the Falcons up for good with the score at 42-13.

“I liked what our kids did,” said Falcon head coach Tony Zarrillo. “They were resilient and showed that they could bounce back, and I’m really pleased with their performance.”