King’s Academy stands tall to claim CCS D-III title over Terra Nova


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CAMPBELL — Let’s make it clear, Noah Short is not Ben Burr-Kirven.

It’s just that The King’s Academy coach Pete Lavorato can’t help but see the parallels between Short and the two-time Mercury News player of the year out of Sacred Heart Prep.

“I’ve talk to you about him and I’ve compared him to you know who,” Lavorato said. “I just think that he’s just a special player and he’s still not 100 percent, to be honest with you.”

It certainly didn’t look as if an ankle injury suffered five weeks earlier in any way hobbled TKA’s hero Saturday night at Westmont High in the Central Coast Section Division III championship game.

The 6-foot, 175-pound junior not only accounted for both touchdowns, he also stopped a two-point try with 30 seconds left inches from the goal line to preserve a 14-13 victory over Terra Nova.

“Unbelievable,” Lavorato said. “We had the game won like four or five times. It’s testament to our defense and a testament of how courageous our kids are.”

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“Props to the Terra Nova team, they just kept coming,” Short said. “But all my guys just kept it together. It was a cold, wet game. I fumbled in the beginning, so they had my back. But everyone just kept coming all game. It’s just a helluva win for the school.”

Top-seeded TKA (10-3) will play in a NorCal regional for the first time, with details about its opponent, place and time to be announced on Sunday.

“I don’t care who, where what, when — it doesn’t matter,” said Lavorato, who claimed his seventh CCS title this decade — five at SHP from 2010-15 and back-to-back trophies at TKA, last year’s Division IV winner. “We’re playing in a NorCal championship game. That is really cool.”

No. 2 Terra Nova (8-5) had multiple chances late in the game.

A muffed punt put the Tigers in the red zone with 8:58 left, but the possession ended with a turnover on downs. After forcing a three-and-out, a holding penalty negated a long run inside the 5-yard line. An interception by TKA senior David Cho ended that drive with barely two minutes to go.

The Knights couldn’t run out the ball and a high snap on the punt gave Terra Nova a glimmer of hope. Three plays after 27-yard completion from Raphael Bendo to his younger brother Nathaniel, a quarterback sneak by Raphael for a 1-yard score set up the scene.

“It was a tough decision, …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports

      

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