EL TORO BOWL VI: Teams riding high, undefeated entering 2012 showdown - Morgan Hill Times: Prep

EL TORO BOWL VI: Teams riding high, undefeated entering 2012 showdown

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Posted: Friday, September 14, 2012 8:39 am

A year sure does make all the difference.

Last season, In the fifth annual El Toro Bowl, Live Oak entered the rivalry contest against Sobrato as underdogs. It was only the beginning of a tough season for the Acorns in the Mount Hamilton Division. And as it were, the scoreboard showed they never won a game.

Technically that isn’t true, though. After the Bulldogs followed through as favorites in the annual game - beating Live Oak 28-21 - the Acorns were awarded the win because of a forfeit.

A year later, both teams certainly have a much different outlook on the game that enters it’s sixth battle at 7 p.m. tonight at Richert Field.

After two weeks of play - against Gilroy High and Christopher High - both schools are riding on a wave of success. For the first time in El Toro Bowl history, both teams enter unscathed at 2-0.

With those early-season undefeated records on the line, this year’s game is more than just a battle for the city championship.

“It’s a big game,” Live Oak head coach Mike Gemo said. “I think it’s probably the first time these teams have played undefeated. The kids from both schools are excited to play each other.”

Live Oak, which holds a 4-1 overall record in the game, is aiming for its third-consecutive championship after last year’s Sobrato forfeit. The Bulldogs will attempt to earn the championship they believe is rightfully theirs after waiting a year for another opportunity.

“It’s always been a tough, hard fought game and that’s definitely what it is going to be again,” Sobrato head coach Nick Borello said. “There have been games when they are heavily favored and we are heavily favored and it didn’t matter. It’s a crosstown rivalry, you throw all that out the door. The boys are going to be fighting against each other hard.”

He continued: “They’ve known each other all their lives. There is bragging rights on the line. It’s going to be a good, hard-fought game. I don’t see either team blowing out the other.”

The team that wins will get a boost entering the league season in two weeks, Borello said.

“This one could set a tone for, you know, each team’s season going forward,” he said. “We both get a bye week and then get into our regular season.”

And it’s a showcase of the city’s talent, Gemo said.

“I think it’s great,” he said. “There is great talent in this town. It’s great to see that hard work and that two schools can produce two good winning programs.”

Like always, both teams are full of confidence entering Friday’s game. Both teams have explosive offenses, highlighted by strong running backs and good quarterbacks.

Through two games, the Sobrato offense has set a school-record pace. In his first year under center in Morgan Hill, Sobrato quarterback Michael Bocksnick has been an electric addition.

Bocksnick has accounted for 418 yards through the air with four touchdowns on 17-for-27 passing. On the ground, the Wing-T quarterback has been just as impressive, running for 248 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries.

Senior running back Miguel Redmond has rushed for more than nine yards per carry on his way to 296 yards in two games.

Sobrato expects to be even better as the players continue to build comfort and confidence.

“During the offseason, the coaches did a really good job at figuring out what we are good at,” Bocksnick said.

For Live Oak, their offense revolves around running back Trevor Bearden, who is expected to play despite leaving last week’s win over Christopher early with an injury.

Bearden has been exactly what the Acorns expected entering the season, rushing for 288 yards and a touchdown on 44 carries. Quarterback Taylor Turnipseed has led an unexpectedly potent air attack, throwing for 300 yards and seven touchdowns, while completing 21 of his 39 passes.

On the outside, Dominic Maciel leads the team the 10 catches and five touchdowns in the two games. With such a high offensive output, Live Oak expects to do the same against a Sobrato defense that struggled against Gilroy last week.

“It’s going to be a good game,” Bearden said. “We have an advantage when it comes to our defenses versus their defense because I think our defense is a lot better. I know we can score some points, but I think our defense is going to do a good job.”

He continued: “I think our whole playbook - we can run every play we want on their defense.”

To win, Sobrato knows it’s defense needs to be much better.

“We didn’t play as good as we could’ve (last week) but this is a really big statement game that can show the can play defense,” Sobrato linebacker Nick Hardy said. “That’s what we are monitoring on. That’s what we are focusing on the most. We put up good numbers on offense so we need to put up some good numbers on defense. That’s our main focus.”

NOTES: Commemorative programs will be sold at the game for $5 apiece. T-shirts and sweatshirts featuring a logo designed by 1978 Live Oak graduate Doug Write will also be available for purchase.

On Sep 13, 2012, at 1:17 PM, Connor Ramey wrote:

A year sure does make all the difference.

In the fifth annual El Toro Bowl last year, Live Oak entered the rivalry contest against Sobrato as unlikely underdogs. It was only the beginning of a tough and hard season for the Acorns in the Mount Hamilton Division. As the scoreboard showed they never won a game.

Technically that isn’t true, though. After the Bulldogs followed through as favorites in the annual game - beating Live Oak 28-21 - the Acorns were awarded the win because of a forfeit.

A year later, both teams certainly have a much different outlook on the game that enters it’s sixth battle at 7 p.m. Friday at Richert Field.

After two weeks of play - against Gilroy High and Christopher High - both schools are riding high on a wave of success. For the first time in El Toro Bowl history, both teams enter unscathed at 2-0.

With those early-season undefeated records on the line, this year’s game is more than just a battle for civic pride.

“It’s a big game,” Live Oak head coach Mike Gemo said. “I think it’s probably the first time these teams have played undefeated. The kids from both schools are excited to play each other. It’s a big game.”

Live Oak, which holds a 4-1 overall record in the game, is aiming for its third-consecutive championship after last year’s Sobrato forfeit. The Bulldogs will attempt to earn the championship they believe is rightfully theirs after waiting a year for another opportunity.

“It’s always been a tough, hard fought game and that’s definitely what it is going to be again,” Sobrato head coach Nick Borello said. “There have been games when they are heavily favored and we are heavily favored and it didn’t matter. It’s a cross-town rivalry, you throw all that out the door. The boys are going to be fighting against each other hard.”

He continued: “They’ve known each other all their lives. There is bragging rights on the line. It’s going to be a good, hard-fought game. I don’t see either team blowing out each other.”

The team that wins will get a boost entering the league season in two weeks, Borello said.

“This one could set a tone for, you know, each team’s season going forward,” he said. “We both get a bye week and then into our regular season. The winning team sure is going to have some momentum going to the league schedule.”

And it’s a showcase for the city’s talent, Gemo said.

“I think it’s great,” he said. “There is great talent in this town. It’s great to see that hard work and that two schools can produce two good winning programs.”

Like always both teams are full of confidence entering Friday’s game. Both teams showcase explosive offenses highlighted by strong running backs and good quarterbacks.

Through two games, the Sobrato offense has set a school-record pace. In his first year under helm in Morgan Hill, Sobrato quarterback Michael Bocksnick has been an electric addition.

Bocksnick has accounted for 418 yards through the air with four touchdowns on 17-for-27 passing. On the ground, the Wing-T quarterback has been just as impressive, running for 248 yards and three touchdowns on 24 carries.

Senior running back Miguel Redmond has rushed for more than nine yards per carry on his way to 296 yards in two games.

Sobrato expects to be even better as the players continue to build comfort and confidence.

“During the offseason the coaches did a really good job at figuring out what we are good at,” Bocksnick said.

For Live Oak, their offense revolves around running back Trevor Bearden, who is expected to play despite leaving last week’s win over Christopher early with an injury.

Bearden has been exactly what the Acorns expected entering the season, rushing for 288 yards and a touchdown on 44 carries. Quarterback Taylor Turnipseed has led the explosive offensive through the air, throwing for 300 yards and seven touchdowns while completing 21 of his 39 passes.

On the outside, Dominic Maciel leads the team the 10 catches and five touchdowns in the two games. With such a high offensive output, Live Oak expects to do the same against a Sobrato defense that struggled against Gilroy last week.

“It’s going to be a good game,” Bearden said. “We have an advantage when it comes to our defenses versus their defense because I think our defense is a lot better. I know we can score some points but I think our defense is going to do a good job because our defense is a lot better than theirs.”

He continued: “I think our whole playbook - we can run every play we want on their defense.”

To win, Sobrato knows it’s defense needs to be much better.

“We didn’t play as good as we could’ve (last week) but this is a really big statement game that can show the can play defense,” Sobrato linebacker Nick Hardy said. “That’s what we are monitoring on. That’s what we are focusing on the most. We put up good numbers on offense so we need to put up some good numbers on defense. That’s our main focus.”

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