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September 15, 2012Palo Alto came into this matchup with a high octane passing game while Archbishop Mitty boasted an efficient ground attack. Both offenses put up four touchdowns each. However, the Vikings muffed its fourth extra point attempt to end up on the losing end 28-27.
The scoring started off with a 16 yard run by Mitty's Chandler Ramirez in the first quarter. Following a turnover by Mitty, Palo Alto's Matt Tolbert ran it in from nine yards out to tie the game. The Vikings' highly touted quarterback, Keller Chryst, completed a 46 yard scoring play to Malcolm Davis for Palo Alto's only lead of the game at 14-7.
Mitty sophomore Dakari Monroe took the ensuing kickoff 99 yards to tie the game at 14 apiece. The Monarchs displayed an efficient offense as quarterback Wyatt Hansen passed for a 16 yard touchdown to Andrew Scott to conclude the half with Mitty leading 21-14.
The third quarter went scoreless but setup an eventful final quarter. Kyle Evans ran 13 yards to put Mitty up 28-14 with over seven minutes left in the game. The Vikings countered with a three minute drive that resulted in Tolbert running six yards for a score to cut the deficit to 28-21.
The Vikings forced a punt and struck with another Chryst to Davis pass play of 65 yards but the extra point attempt's snap was muffed to conclude the scoring at 28-27.
Palo Alto got the ball back with 55 seconds but Chryst was sacked and fumbled the ball away to end the game.
Offensive Comparison: The Monarchs' running game is the focal point of the offense with Ramirez being a sturdy runner and Hansen capable of running the option. Despite being undersized, Hansen displayed an accurate and strong arm. Hansen plays in the same vein as former Boston College Eagle, Doug Flutie.
Only a junior, Paly's Chryst put up big numbers as a sophomore and should do the same in his junior season. The receivers are undersized but speedy. Tolbert can help add some balance as he did run for two scores in the game.
Defenses Hold: The Monarchs line was able to sack Chryst several times and disrupt his flow. But when the line did not apply pressure and gave Chryst time to throw, the Viking quarterback was accurate as he did have those two long touchdown passes.
Palo Alto's defense had a bend but not break performance. Mitty was able to move the ball well against Palo Alto but did not capitalize on all their scoring chances. The defense will be shielded by the offense's ability to put up points.
Special Teams the Difference: In addition to the Monroe kickoff return, the Monarchs had a few other good kickoff returns and the punting was solid in its distance.
The Vikings employed the speedy wide receiver Davis in the return game as he displayed good elusiveness. Chryst also served as the punter but was at best average in his punts. And the missed extra point was the difference in the game.
Next Steps and Analysis: Mitty has a bye week before playing Serra and Bellarmine consecutively. That stretch could determine the West Catholic Athletic League. Mitty moved the ball well offensively as Hansen is a solid dual threat. The defense was able to apply pressure and win the battle of the trenches. To win the WCAL, Mitty will have to win that battle.
The Vikings play hometown rival Gunn before the De Anza League play starts. Palo Alto is still the favorite in their league. Chryst was harassed consistently in the backfield but was accurate with his passes when given time. The defense looked porous at times. Palo Alto should be able to outscore most of its opponents until the postseason rolls around.