Mustangs recover with win

Andrew Gonzalez

The Los Medanos College Mustangs took it to the San Jose City College Jaguars by scoring three touchdowns in the fourth quarter, after having gone back and forth for most of their contest, to cap off a 41-27 victory.

The late rally on Saturday Oct. 21 saw the Mustangs improve their standing to 6-1 overall, but more importantly got them back on track in conference play improving to 2-1, after losing their previous conference matchup to Yuba.

San Jose entered the game with a 2-6 record, which made them appear to be an easy matchup, but the first possession of the game indicated they weren’t going to give up an inch without a fight.

LMC was able to get into enemy territory after one play when quarterback Sohail Mohsini hit wide-receiver James Looney on a 40-yard pass. Afterward, penalties on both squads caused the Mustangs to go north and south within the red-zone, but eventually they found themselves knocking on pay dirt at the one-yard line.

A stuffed run put them back to the three-yard line on third and goal, and on that down running back Craijon Menefee was stripped of the ball by the Jaguars, resulting in a recovery by the defense.

San Jose ultimately punted on their ensuing possession, but showcased early on the Mustangs needed to give it all they had if they were to improve from their second-place standing in the conference.

They then took it upon themselves to open up the scoring on their second possession, after Mohsini ran in a 15-yard touchdown to end a 12-play, 67-yard drive. The Jaguars wasted no time answering back, conducting a 76-yard drive of their own, which almost was for naught, as they had to earn their touchdown on fourth and goal from the one-yard line.

SJCC now led 7-6, and after both teams traded stagnant positions, LMC had the opportunity to take the lead just before the half after receiving the ball with less than four minutes remaining in the second quarter.

On what was shaping out to be another empty possession, the Stangs stared down a third and nine deep on their own side of the field before Mohsini hit wide-receiver Jelani Davis who exploded for a 74-yard score.

However they left 2:44 left on the clock, enough time for San Jose to work some magic of their own and score on an improbable 39-yard heave on fourth and 27 to regain the lead into the half at 14-12.

The second half began with frustrating possessions for both teams, as SJCC only managed six yards, while LMC turned the ball over on fourth and goal after marching over 60 yards.

Then, a shootout emerged. Jaguar’s running back Tyree Nesmith took a hand-off 78-yards to the house on the first play of the drive after LMC stalled, extending the lead to 21-12. The Stangs opted for a long six-minute drive themselves, concluding with Menefee this time muscling his way into the end zone from the goal line bringing the score to 21-19.

But Nesmith was just getting himself going, as a 36-yard run help set up his team at the three-yard line where the other member of the backfield Isaiah Feaster punched it in late in the third quarter. A missed extra point left the Mustangs within one score to tie, and they did not miss the chance despite having to travel 83 yards to do so, on yet another fourth and goal, early in the fourth.

Four straight possessions resulted in touchdowns, but San Jose was unable to make it a fifth. When the Mustang offense took the field, Davis came through with another big play, this time a 49-yard reception to set up running back Namontte Grisby for a five-yard rushing touchdown to capture the elusive lead at 34-27.

The LMC defense then took the spotlight, forcing a fumble that ended a Jaguar drive early, and sealing the game as cornerback Antoine Tanner intercepted a pass and returned it for a score. The score then stood at 41-27 in favor of the Mustangs with not nearly enough time for the Jaguars to make a comeback.

The game hung in the balance for the majority, waiting for either group to take command, which ultimately LMC did, proving themselves to be a true contender in the conference.

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