Canyon's Noah Faryniarz blocks a field-goal attempt by Bonita Vista's Matt Michaud to keep the game tied, 14-14, going into halftime during Friday's CIF State Division IV-AA regional championship at Southwestern College in Chula Vista.

Canyon's historic season comes to end


CHULA VISTA – They weren’t quite ready to see such a historic journey come to an end, and for good reason.

When this year’s batch of Canyon seniors were freshman, they watched the varsity program struggle to win just three games. So the goal in their final campaign on campus was to put Comanche football back on the map, which they succeeded in – even in defeat – on Friday night.

Under a constant downpour on the road at Southwestern College, the Comanches dropped the CIF State Division IV–AA Regional Championship game, 24-21, to Bonita Vista of Chula Vista.

Canyon finished the season with a 9-6 record, and captured the program’s first CIF-SS championship trophy in the process.

“Couldn’t be more proud of them,” Comanches coach Mike Ogas said after the game. “They were the best football team in the history of the high school. I can’t say anything more. What else matters than that?

“They fought as hard they could. That’s a good team we lost to. That’s a great running back. But that being said, we had our chances. We didn’t capitalize on the opportunities we had and that’s why we lost.”

Bonita Vista (12-2) running back Greg Bell carried the ball 33 times for 279 yards and two touchdowns. The shifty senior put an exclamation mark on a stellar evening with the game-winning 19-yard touchdown run with 1:54 remaining in the contest.

The Barons advance to next Saturday night’s state championship game, where they will play Hanford.

“It’s a sad thing that we lost, but we fought hard all season and that’s all you can ask for,” Comanches linebacker Avery Jones said. “A bunch of teams would love to be playing 15 games this season. To come this far, almost making it to state, it’s a huge way from where we were a few years ago.”

At no point Friday night did either side lead by more than a touchdown. The Barons and Comanches took a 14-14 tie into an extended halftime period that was caused by lightning storms in the surrounding areas.

Despite the 40-minute break, Ogas didn’t see a loss of rhythm from either sideline.

“I felt like it was our advantage actually,” he said. “It happens. You can’t control the weather. We prepared for it well. They’re a good team. They didn’t allow us to make plays when it mattered.”

Trailing 17-14 midway through the fourth quarter, Canyon went on a 12-play, 72-yard drive that was capped off with a 1-yard touchdown pass from Jason Harman to Jones.

Harman threw three touchdowns on the night, and running back Charlie Treanor ran 32 times for 133 yards.

Canyon punted the ball to Bonita Vista with 2:55 remaining. The Barons drove 50 yards on five plays to grab the go-ahead score, Bell’s 19-yard counter being the decisive blow.

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