San Marcos beats rival DP for first league win in five years

Ivan Reyes dives over the goal to score one of his two touchdowns. for San Marcos.

Ivan Reyes dives over the goal to score one of his two touchdowns for San Marcos. (Presidio Sports photos)

Nathan Coffey called it clearing the devils of the past.

Friday night, Coffey and his San Marcos teammates turned Warkentin Stadium into a little piece of heaven. They played a solid football game and defeated Goleta Valley rival Dos Pueblos, 27-10, for the program’s first Channel League win in five seasons and the first for coach Anthony Linebaugh.

Running back Ivan Reyes rushed 100 yards and two touchdowns, Coffey kicked a pair of field goals and the Royals’ defense recorded six quarterback sacks in a dominating performance. The win improves San Marcos’ record to 3-5 and 1-1 in Channel League.

Dos Pueblos suffered its sixth straight loss, dropping to 1-8 on the year and 0-3 in league.

Reyes was named the winner of the Jeff Hesselmeyer Game MVP award.

The Royals showed right from the start that they put last week’s blowout loss against Ventura behind them. They took the opening kickoff and rolled down the field behind the running of Reyes. The drive stalled and Coffey kick a 34-yard field for an early lead.

“They were motivated, you could tell. They played inspired football tonight,” said DP coach Nate Mendoza.

Reyes said the team has talked about winning a league game all season.

“We need to progress, we need to win a Channel League game,” he said. “We finally did that, we finally took a step forward.”

It was a gratifying moment for Linebaugh, who’s been working hard to change the football culture at San Marcos.

San Marcos quarterback Sage Reid looks for an open receiver. (Presidio Sports photos)

San Marcos quarterback Sage Reid looks for an open receiver. (Presidio Sports photos)

“It feels great for myself and the program,” he said. “It’s a staff win, it’s program win and I’m happy for the school, too. For the boys, we battled in believing in ourselves. When you put the self-imposed pressure in, it’s tough. “I told them don’t look at adversity as a obstacle but as an opportunity.”

After the loss to Ventura, “We had a new opportunity and I was happy they embraced that opportunity,” he said.

Said Coffey of the turnaround, “We just got to move on.”

Dos Pueblos tied the score at 3-3 on a 28-yard field goal by Nathan Garcia. The field goal was set up by a 66-yard kickoff return by Vicente Baltadano.

Dos Pueblos was on the move again, but Josh Foley’s sack of DP quarterback Barrett Burnes on fourth down ended the drive at the 31.

San Marcos took a 10-3 lead just before halftime. The Royals capitalized on a 19-yard DP punt and started their drive at the Charger 39. Quarterback Sage Reid passed to Reyes for nine yards and two plays later hit Inri Cortez on a 29-yard slant for a touchdown with 1:20 left in the half.

The Royals expanded the lead to 17-3 on they first possession of the second half. They drove 56 yards, with Reyes plunging over from the 1 for the score. The drive was helped by a Cortez run of 26 yards and a 10-yard run by Reid.

Reyes gave props to the offensive line, which was without injured starter Nate Willows but still controlled things in the trenches.

“They did a good job,” he said. “They kept their heads in the game the whole game. They never gave up.”

Josh Flora of Dos Pueblos tries to get away from San Marcos defenders.

Josh Flora of Dos Pueblos tries to get away from San Marcos defenders.

“It always starts with the young men up front,” Linebaugh noted.”It was nice to seem them establish that, and our backs are really confident in our linemen.”

The line gave Reid time to hit tight end D’Shaun Vines on a 39-yard pass play that set up a 29-yard field goal by Coffey, putting the Royals up 20-3 with 2:52 left in the third quarter.

Dos Pueblos recovered a fumble at its 35 and capitalized on the turnover with a 20-yard touchdown pass from Kellen Roberts to Josh Flora. That made it a 20-10 game with 7:42 to play.

The Chargers got the ball back at its 39 with 5:47 to go. They went to the air but were stymied by the San Marcos pass defense. Then Coffey sacked Roberts for a 6-yard loss.

“We have contagious energy on this team. That’s really what it us,” said Coffey of the defensive performance.

The Royals broke up a pass on fourth down and took over at the DP 42. Reyes moved the chains with his powerful running and he scored on a 1-yard run to seal the Channel League victory with 1:11 to go.


Dos Pueblos…3  0  0   7 — 10

San Marcos…3  7  10  7 — 27

First quarter

SM—FG, 34 Coffey, 4:23

DP—FG, 28 Garcia, 2:28

Second quarter

SM—Cortez 29 pass from Reid, Coffey kick, 1:20

Third quarter

SM—Reyes 1 run, Coffey kick, 8:30

SM—FG, 29 Coffey, 2:52

Fourth quarter

DP—Flora 20 pass from Roberts, Garcia kick, 7:42

SM—Reyes 1 run, Coffey kick, 1:11