Miramonte Edges Out Vanden to Start the Season with a Win

Peter+Stehr+%2718+rushes+the+ball+Friday+night+against+the+Vanden+Vikings

Peter Stehr '18 rushes the ball Friday night against the Vanden Vikings

Jonah Medal-Katz, Staff Writer

As soon as the Vanden High running back broke free on a huge touchdown run in the first seconds of the game, the Mats knew they were in for a fight. Miramonte football traveled to Fairfield this past Friday night to take on the Vanden Vikings in a season opening win.

The Matadors offense struggled against a physical Vanden defense and cold, windy conditions. The Vikings continually and shockingly stuffed the Mats offense who put teams behind by up to 40 points a game in their 2015 season. Miramonte’s youthful offensive line which features only two seniors, struggled against the Viking’s pounding defensive front. The pressure proved to be an issue for the Matadors, forcing Quarterback Tim Tague ‘17 out of the pocket on multiple occasions. The Matadors did reach the end zone twice on offense with touchdown passes to Peter Stehr ‘18 and Will Cassriel ‘18.

The Miramonte defense played solid all game, making up for a lack of offensive production. “After Vanden scored at half and put us down 10, our big defensive plays kept us in the game.” said Will Cassriel ‘18.  Peter Stehr ‘18 proved to be a monster on defense with a team high 13 tackles and three sacks on his varsity debut. Casey McGonigle and Ryan Walker were also huge for the Miramonte defense with eight tackles each. The game’s turning point came with Will Cassriel’s interception for a touchdown in the third quarter to go ahead 27-23. The Mats defense prevailed again in the fourth quarter, shutting the Vanden offense down for the remainder of the game and securing the win.

The Matadors will be short on players coming out of the Vanden game with injuries to Ben Wemer and Carson Lowe, two offensive starters. Lowe suffered his second shoulder dislocation which could see him out for a couple weeks. Wemer expects to be out for at least one week after suffering an ankle injury. The Mats will take their 1-0 record into a lopsided matchup against a short-staffed Saint Mary’s of Berkeley. Kickoff will be at 1:30 P.M. on Saturday.