Eagles Get Win on Homecoming

The MSJC football team defeated Southwestern Saturday 48-16 in their 2023 Homecoming game.
The MSJC football team defeated Southwestern Saturday 48-16 in their 2023 Homecoming game.

The MSJC football team picked up their first win of the season on Saturday night as they won their 2023 Homecoming game at HCN Bank Stadium 48-16.

The Eagles started fast as Zach Zella found Elijah Simley for a 22 yard touchdown pass just three minutes into the action on Saturday to stake MSJC an early 6-0 lead.  Southwestern blocked the extra point.  MSJC kicker Mason Krause would get another chance midway through the first and he connected on a 20 yard filed goal to push the Eagle lead to 9-0.  Southwestern would close the gap to 9-6 when they scored a late first quarter TD, but the Eagles blocked the extra point and Tyler Martin scooped it up and returned it 90 yards to give MSJC an 11-6 lead after a wild first period.

In the second quarter Zella would find Christian Kretz on a 10 yard scoring strike and then later in the period connect with Tevita Hailalilo on a 2 yard pass and the Eagles would go into halftime leading 25-13.

During a halftime celebration the MSJC Athletic Department recoginized their Hall of Fame Class of 2023.  The class included Jamaal Tinsley (basketball '98-99), John Norman (football '74-75), the 1999 football team and Ken Reed (meritorious service).

The second half was all Eagles as Zella threw two more touchdown passes, one to Simley for 22 yards and another to Kretz for 27 yards as MSJC pulled away.  David Clark scored on a 28 yard run and Krause added his second field goal of the day to round out the scoring.

Zella finished an outstanding evening completing 22 of 29 passes for 305 yards to go along with his 5 touchdowns, Kretz was his top target on the night making 6 catches for 88 yards.  Matthew Caldera dominated the ground game for the Eagles as he rushed for 93 yards on 14 carries.

DeShawn Brooks had a team high 5 tackles , including a sack for MSJC while Koa Kaleopaa had 1 and a half sacks.  Martin and Carsten Mamaril each had an interception in the victory.

MSJC improved to 1-5 overall on the season and 1-2 in National Southern League play.  The Eagles will be on the road Saturday October 21st when they travel to San Diego Mesa for a 6 pm game.