The St. Patrick-St. Vincent High football team will try to extend its season when the Bruins host the Stellar Prep Thunder in Saturday night’s North Coast Section Division V quarterfinal at Dante Magnani Field.
The No. 5 seeded Bruins (8-3) are looking to get to the NCS semifinals for the first time since 2007 while No. 4 seed Stellar Prep (6-3) is trying to get back to the semifinals for the second time in the past three years.
Stellar Prep and SPSV met last year at Dante Magnani Field and things did not go well for the Bruins. SPSV managed only eight yards of total offense and rushed for minus-12 yards on 21 carries in an ugly 28-0 loss. SPSV’s quarterback was sacked 10 times and completed only 5-of-16 passes for 20 yards.
But that was last year, and the Bruins have been playing like a completely different team in 2016. Senior quarterback Michael Pappas was named the Tri-County Athletic League’s Offensive Player of the Year and leads a SPSV offense that scored 41 points in the first half alone in last week’s first-round playoff victory over the St. Francis Sharks. Seniors Marquel Johnson, Kailon Johnson-Loud, junior Marshel Martin and sophomore Akil Edwards continue to make big plays, and Devin Devlin leads a hard-nosed defense.
Stellar Prep of Oakland won four straight to end the regular season, including a 42-7 victory at Harker in the regular-season finale. SPSV beat Harker 52-7 back in September while Stellar Prep beat St. Francis, 32-0, in Watsonville to spoil the Sharks’ homecoming last October.
The Thunder are led by 6-foot-1, 200-pound quarterback Una Hopoi and fellow senior co-captain Addison Gumbs, a powerful 6-4, 225-pound outside linebacker who leads Stellar Prep in sacks. Gumbs has already committed to the University of Oklahoma.
The winner of Saturday night’s game advances to the semifinals against either No. 1 seed Berean Christian or No. 8 seed California School for the Deaf.