Momentum flirted with Vacaville High School’s football team during the second quarter Friday night at Cardinal Newman in Santa Rosa. The Bulldogs did not seem that interested, so the Cardinals took it back on their way to a 27-7 victory.
Vacaville’s defense courted momentum by getting its first three-and-out with Cardinal Newman leading 20-0. Massimo Menicou produced the only highlight for the Bulldogs by blocking a punt. Justin Albrecht recovered the ball in the end zone to pull Vacaville within 13 points.
The Bulldogs got another three-and-out, appearing to have finally figured out how to stop the Cardinals. Momentum was no longer enamored with Cardinal Newman and decided to give Vacaville a shot with the Bulldogs starting their ensuing possession at their 27-yard line.
Momentum had to be impressed with Cristian Diosdado’s 15-yard run for Vacaville’s initial first down. That was it for the Bulldogs, however, as they shifted into reverse. A penalty for an ineligible receiver downfield made it first-and-15 at the 37. Diosdado then lost 2 yards. to make it second-and-17.
Cardinal Newman was penalized for enroachment, so Vacaville got 5 free yards for second-and-12 at the 40. A 1-yard gain by Diosdado left the Bulldogs with one play to keep momentum on their side, but they called a play they had tried three times earlier with no success.
The play is designed for Diosdado to go in motion to become the target for quarterback Brody Fortunati. The Bulldogs lost a total of 9 yards the first two times they tried it and gained 2 on the third attempt. At least the fourth try ended in an incompletion with Diosdado being knocked off his feet by Cardinal Newman’s Dominick Torres as the pass arrived.
Diosdado was 4 yards deep in the backfield after going in motion and turning back toward Fortunati. Third-and-11 might as well have been third-and-15.
After Cardinal Newman’s third touchdown, Jemeir Buckner returned the kickoff 39 yards to give the Bulldogs a first down at the Cardinals’ 48-yard line. The Bulldogs tried the pass to Diosdado again on first down, but he was trapped in the backfield for a 7-yard loss.
Fortunati finished 4-for-14 with all of his completions coming in the first half – for a total of minus-7 yards. He also threw an interception.
Play selection did not matter that much for the Bulldogs when they scored 84 points in winning their first two games. When those calls mattered against the Cardinals, the Bulldogs did not answer.