photo by Mike Daly
REDDING, Calif. – College of the Siskiyous took advantage of four Shasta College turnovers Saturday as the Knights fell 49-21 to their rival at Memorial Stadium in the Think Pink Breast Cancer Awareness Game.
The Knights matched the Eagles' scoring through the first half, knotted at 14 at the break thanks to a 22-yard touchdown throw from Hoku-Lani Wickard to Karnell Collier and an 11-yard run up the gut from Cavin Gillispie. Shasta even held Siskiyous out of the end zone before half by recovering an Andrew Kannely-Robles fumble at the goal line but failed to carry the momentum into the second half.
Shasta gave up 35 straight points in the second half, four of which came from the arm of Thairen Sivongsa on four straight pass attempts.
"It was one of the worst third quarters I've witnessed in a long time," said Shasta College head coach Craig Thompson.
Shasta redeemed itself from its failed onside kick coming out of half by Zach Thompson jumping on a Siskiyous fumble. But Wickard was picked off on the ensuing drive, one of his three interceptions on the night and Siskiyous capitalized with an 8-yard touchdown pass from Sivongsa to Brennan Howell. Shasta flipped the field with a 59-yard pass to Collier but the drive was halted and Siskiyous was called for running into the kicker on a field goal attempt, injuring Knights kicker Junior Gonzalez. It forced Shasta to go for it on fourth down at the 15 and Wickard was sacked for a four-yard loss, ending the scoring threat.
It unraveled for there as Siskiyous fired an 81-yard touchdown pass on the ensuing play. It took the Eagles 16 plays to score across five straight drives. The Eagles turned four turnovers into 28 points on the night with the average starting field position on those drives at the Shasta 22.
"The law of averages in football is the closer you get to the end zone the more chances you have to score," Thompson said. "It put our defense in some tough situations."
Sivongsa followed the 81-yard score with touchdown passes of 10 and 61 yards before Siskiyous' Dangelo Biggs ran a sweep for a 5-yard score and a 49-14 lead with 11:22 left in the game.
Knights quarterback Kody Karpinski replaced Wickard and ignited life into the home sideline with physical runs and a few connections to Collier. Karpinski's 24-yard run set up Marvin Jackson's first collegiate touchdown, a 6-yard run on the next play to end the scoring for the night.
Wickard was 17 of 24 for 192 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions while Collier had six catches for 120 yards and a score. Patrick Blake caught four passes for 48 yards and Gillispie led the Knights in rushing with 56 yards on 16 carries.
Hunter Margain was the leading Shasta tackler with seven stops, followed by Thompson, Matthew Arriaga and Detrius Kelsall, who each had six tackles. De'Jarrious Hutcherson forced a fumble and had four tackles.
Shasta plays at No. 20 American River next week before coming home to play No. 4 Butte in the season finale.
NorCal Conference Standings
Team NorCal, Overall
#4 Butte 3-0, 7-1
Sierra 2-1, 5-3
#20 American River 2-1, 4-4
Shasta 1-2, 2-6
Siskiyous 1-2, 2-6
Feather River 0-3, 2-6