Oilers’ raw determination wins Richmond Cup
on October 30, 2010
Rival teams Richmond High Oilers and De Anza Dons battled head to head last night for the Richmond Cup. “It gives the team bragging rights,” said Oilers J.V. Head Coach Marques Arnold. “It also boosts team morale and confidence.”
At a time when Richmond high schools are struggling to repair their football programs, the Richmond Cup is especially important for the coaches. “This means something,” said Arnold. “This is our program. They’re our future.”
The J.V. game began with a few people in attendance, but the teams played as if the stands were filled with screaming fans.
Halfway through the second quarter, Richmond’s Davonte Anderson, #15, scored the first touchdown of the game.
Near the end of the second quarter, it was looking up for the Oilers with a 16-0 lead. “I’m happy,” said assistant coach De’Andre Green, “but I’m not satisfied. A coach should never be satisfied.”
But with a minute to go, De Anza’s Andre Dunn and Rome Watson each scored touchdowns. The score was 16-14.
“We are our own worst enemy,” Coach Marques shouted. “We do it to ourselves.”
A late Richmond touchdown was called off by a yellow flag and with just seconds on the clock, De Anza pulled ahead with a third touchdown, bringing the score to 22-16.
In the locker room during halftime, the players hung their heads.
“You’re gonna finish what you started,” yelled assistant coach Marlyn Johnson. “You owe yourselves that. You owe your team that.”
After halftime, the players tore onto the field ready to fight.
The Richmond defense shut down De Anza for the rest of the game. Richmond poured on four more touchdowns. The game ended 42-22. “We get what we want!” bellowed Coach Marques. “WE GET WHAT WE WANT.”
“We—are—proud—of—you,” chanted the cheerleaders, “said, we’re—so—proud—of—you.”
When the Richmond Varsity team jogged onto the field, the air was charged with excitement of the previous victory.
Varsity Head Coach Jeff Tyner was optimistic for the game. “Who to look out for?” he asked. “All of ‘em. Look out for all of ‘em.”
In the first 20 seconds, Oilers’ Running Back Demariye Williams, #5, grabbed the game’s first touchdown. The score jumped back and forth and by the end of the first quarter, De Anza led 23-14.
The first quarter also brought injuries.
Gilbert Harlee, #4, was playing defense, heard a pop in his knee, and spent the rest of the game limping along the sidelines. Jagdeep Singh Dool, #1, collided with another player on the field and was on his back for a few minutes before he walked off for the night.
“I can play,” insisted Dool, trying to push past the coach.
“Listen to me,” said assistant coach Johnson, holding Dool by the shoulders. “Look at me. You’re done for the night. That’s just the way it is.”
Dool walked off, and threw his helmet on the ground. He came back a few minutes later and watched the game from the bench.
In the second quarter, the Oilers rebounded. Quarterback Daniel Esparza, #3, and Demariye Williams, #5, each scored, taking a 30-23 lead.
Coach Tyner watched intently from the sidelines, hand to chin, a few feet from the sideline crowd. “We can’t give up nothing,” he shouted.
At halftime, morale was up—players were laughing and joking, ready to get back out on the field. Players huddled around the coaches, as they talked strategy.
“The game is far from over,” said Coach Tyner. “Twenty-three points in the first quarter is unacceptable. Let’s get this done so we can enjoy our weekends.”
The teams battled. Helmets crashed, bodies thudded, knees twisted.
With 10 minutes to go in the fourth quarter, Wide Receiver Isaiah Brown, #10, broke away and set up Danny McLean, #6, to drive home the Oilers’ final touchdown. De Anza scored with 6 minutes to go, but the Oilers prevailed with a 38-29 victory.
“It’s one of the best feelings in the world,” said Williams, #5, of running for a touchdown. “I mean, once you get in that end zone, it’s like you’re in another world.”
The Oilers play their homecoming game against the Alameda Hornets at Richmond High School next week.
- Richmond Oilers v. Alameda Hornets at Richmond High School (Homecoming)
– J.V. on Thursday, 11/4 at 5:30 p.m.
– Varsity on Friday, 11/5 at 5 p.m.
- 11/12: Richmond Oilers v. Pinole Valley Spartans at Richmond High School (Last game of the season)
Upcoming Oilers Games:
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