Alhambra’s Playoff Run Ends with 28-19 Loss to Loara

By Ron Vrooman

(Alhambra) – The Alhambra Moors got close with two third-quarter touchdowns, but a go-ahead score never materialized as the visiting Loara Saxons held on for a 28-19 win in a Division 14 semifinal game last Friday night.    

The Moors ended the 2021 season with an overall record of 6-7, while the victorious Saxons (7-6) will host Rialto in the championship final this Friday evening.   

Alhambra fell behind, 21-6, early in the third quarter, after Loara quarterback Andre Sanchez hit wide receiver Jeremiah Aldy with a 55-yard touchdown pass.   

The Moors scored on their next two possessions to cut the gap to 21-19.   

Alhambra QB Michael Gonzalez threw a 48-yard scoring strike to slot receiver Johnny Thang to make the score 21-12. The Moors then tried for a two-point conversion, but Gonzalez got sacked before he could get off a pass.   

Gonzalez later hit wide receiver Joshua Soto with a 30-yard touchdown throw, and Emilio Reynoso’s extra point made it a two-point game with 4:46 left in the quarter.   

However, Loara extended its lead to 28-19 after a two-yard TD run by Cesar Vazquez with 7:18 left in the game, and Alhambra was unable to score again.  

Sanchez completed seven of 18 passes for 130 yards and the one touchdown, with two interceptions, for the Saxons. Vazquez carried the ball 15 times for 92 yards, while teammate Isaac Malaga rushed for 89 yards and a touchdown on 12 carries.   

Malaga also hurled a 57-yard scoring pass to wide receiver Remy Ybarra on a trick play early in the second quarter.   The Saxons amassed 410 yards in total offense, with 223 of those yards coming on the ground. The Moors, who managed to run for only 30 yards, had to rely almost solely on their passing attack.    

Gonzalez, who was frequently under pressure and plagued by several dropped throws, completed 16 of 47 passes for a career-high 303 yards and all three Alhambra touchdowns. Thang made a total of eight catches for 124 yards and two TD’s, and Soto hauled in five passes for 116 yards and an additional score.   

Gonzalez’s one interception, which led to Loara’s third-quarter touchdown, and two turnovers on downs inside the Saxons’ 15-yard line, proved costly for the Moors.   

Penalties were also an important factor in the game; Alhambra was penalized 15 times for a total of 110 yards, while Loara drew 11 penalties for 102 yards.  

1 Comment to "Alhambra’s Playoff Run Ends with 28-19 Loss to Loara"

  1. Ron Vrooman, AHS stat man's Gravatar Ron Vrooman, AHS stat man
    November 26, 2021 - 2:52 pm | Permalink

    Passing stats for Alhambra quarterback Michael Gonzalez:
    Fall 2021 season (13 games)—169 completions in 326 attempts (51.8%) for 2,241 yds. & 28 TD’s, with 7 interceptions.
    Career (14 games)—189/359 (52.6%) for 2,456 yds. & 30 TD’s, with 8 interceptions.

    Thank you to Michael and all of the other players who hung in there the entire season. You salvaged something of value from that difficult start and have set the stage for a successful future at Alhambra High.
    Good luck in your studies and happy holidays!

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