Jets Win Fifth Straight Island Bowl

The Encinal Jets  celebrate their  fifth straight Island  Bowl victory  after defeating  crosstown rival  Alameda Hornets  41-7 at Willie  Stargell Field.  They still trail the  overall series lead  33-31-2.
Katherine Mejia -The Encinal Jets celebrate their fifth straight Island Bowl victory after defeating crosstown rival Alameda Hornets 41-7 at Willie Stargell Field. They still trail the overall series lead 33-31-2.

Jets Win Fifth Straight Island Bowl

The game was nearly two years in the making. Last year’s cancelled contest meant that players from Alameda and Encinal had to wait 728 days to face off in the island’s crosstown rivalry game. But for many of the 2,000 fans in attendance the 66th Island Bowl was worth the wait.

The Jets defeated the Hornets 41-7 on Sept. 10 at Willie Stargell Field, giving Encinal High School (EHS) a five-game win streak over rival Alameda High School (AHS).

For some players, winning the Island Bowl is a lifelong dream.

“I used to come to the field and watch the Island Bowl since fourth grade,” said Encinal sophomore cornerback Tristan Berena said. “Now being in it, it’s an amazing experience. Did it for my family and brothers.”

Senior quarterback Garrett Deatherage threw for 236 yards and four touchdowns, bringing his season total to 10.

“It feels really good,” Deatherage said. “Feels like the team did what we had to do and everyone brought the energy from the linemen to the receivers.”

The Jets (2-0) opened the scoring when Deatherage found Kenneth Lorenzo in the endzone for a 26-yard strike. Three more touchdown passes to senior tight end Alex De La O, and junior wide receivers Kenneth Lorenzo and Marques Singleton gave the Jets a 28-0 halftime lead.

“It honestly felt amazing to be in my first and last Island Bowl,” said De La O. “The fact that I scored a touchdown in it was awesome.”

De La O caught a pass off a wheel route and raced 80 yards down the sideline.

Singleton ended any hopes of an Alameda comeback when he took the second half kickoff all the way to the end zone. It was his second return touchdown of the season.

“We [practice returns] three times a week but everyone gets really hyped when we do a kick return,” Singleton said. “My teammates block really well which makes me really happy.”

Jet running back Frederick Tyler scored a 20-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to increase the lead to 41-0. The Hornets finally got on the scoreboard when Hornet quarterback Lee John Majerus ran 35 yards for paydirt.

“It’s disappointing to go out like this,” Majerus said. “The score doesn’t reflect the kind of team we are or how much work we’ve put in to better ourselves.”

Despite EHS winning 12 of the last 14 games, the fact that the game was even played was a boost for the entire city.

“With the bands performing, cheerleaders dancing, and players competing, a crowd of spectators, and a home football game that has not been played in over two years, we pulled it off and had an absolutely safe and fun event for the entire Alameda community,” said Encinal leadership advisor Kevin Gorham. “The real winner was the entire Alameda community.”

The loss gives AHS a 1-2 overall record on the season. They face San Lorenzo High School in its next contest on Sept. 24. EHS will look to remain undefeated against Lodi High this Friday.

The Hornets leads the Island Bowl series 33-31-2.

The Encinal Journalism program is operated from Joshua Linville’s English and publication design class at Encinal High School.

Encinal High quarterback Garrett Deatherage eludes the Alameda High defender to run for a 12-yard gain in the first quarter.