Palisades High School pulled out a 35-10 victory over Panorama City’s St. Genevieve on September 8 at the Stadium by the Sea. The team is now 3-1 for the season.
The home crowd was energized and welcomed the Class of 1983, who was holding a reunion. Cheerleaders from that class gave a lovely half-time dance presentation.
Football was a different story.
It wasn’t a pretty first quarter.
The Dolphins received the ball on kickoff but failed to move beyond their own 36.
St. Genevieve blocked the punt and were able to take over on the Palisades 18. Unable to move the ball, the Valients attempted a field goal, which was no good.
With about a minute left in the first quarter, the Dolphins were on the 5-yard-line with what looked like a sure touchdown, but instead there was a fumble and the Valients took over on their own 9-yard-line.
At the start of the second quarter, St. Genevieve couldn’t move the ball, and punted. The Dolphins started on the 35, and sophomore Harrison Carter ran it to the 20.
La Scala completed a 19-yeard pass to senior Jaden Williams and then Teralle Watson ran it in for the first touchdown of the game. Kellan Ford’s PAT was good, and the Dolphins led 7 -0.
Going into this game Watson, a junior, was averaging 7.5 yards per carry, and was a key factor in this win. This was the first of his two touchdowns.
Coach Dylen Smith said after the game that “running the ball was the focus this week in practice. The running game definitely got us going.”
With less than four minutes left in the half, senior Matthew Spoonamore intercepted a pass on the Palisades 35 and made a 65-yard run into the end zone for Pali’s second touchdown. Ford’s PAT was good.
Because of a prior penalty, Pali kicked off from its own 25. The Valiants wasted no time in scoring on the “shorter field” and were aided with a pass interference call on the Dolphins in the end zone. The PAT was good, and the half ended 14-7.
In the third quarter, the Dolphins piled on the penalties, holding, face mask and two personal fouls, which took the Valiants from their own 35 to the Palisades 20. The Valiants made a field goal attempt to pull the score to within four points.
The Dolphins worked their way down the field, but a pass into the endzone was intercepted by St. Genevieve.
Unable to move the ball, the Valiants punted to start the fourth quarter. In excellent field position, Watson was able to move the ball in for his second touchdown. Ford’s PAT was good.
The Dolphins next touchdown came with about five minutes left in the game. Carter made the run into the endzone, on plays that started on the Valiant 36-yard line.
A 30-yard pass from LaScala to Williams scored the final touchdown and with Ford’s PAT, the final was 35-10.
Quarterback LaScala said after the game, “Our running game was really good.”
Smith said that the bye week will be used towards working with La Scala and the wide receivers. “We need to get them involved,” Smith said.
One of PaliHi’s top receivers, senior Braydon Sanford has been out with an injury and there is hope that after a Dolphin’s bye week, he will be able to play for the September 22 game at Brentwood.
“I hope he’ll be back for the next game,” La Scala said. “I think we’ll get our rhythm going.”
League starts on September 28 with an afternoon game at Hamilton and Pali’s next home game will be on October 6 against Fairfax.