In somewhat of a David vs. Goliath match-up, the Escalon Cougars battled host Marin Catholic right down to the final minute, coming up just short in a 21-14 NorCal Bowl game on Friday night.
Hitting the road for the Dec. 3 contest, the Division 5 Section champion Cougars were matched up with the private school powerhouse Division 2 Section champion Wildcats and went into the locker room down 14-0.
Marin Catholic made it 21-0 in the third before Escalon started its comeback; scoring in the third and again in the fourth quarter to trim the lead to a touchdown. A late drive by the Cougars, who were looking to get the equalizer, ended on an interception and the Wildcats were able to kneel out the clock.
As players hugged and shook hands on the field as time expired, Escalon ending its campaign and Marin Catholic preparing to move on to the State Division 4-AA title game, the Wildcats left with the win and a newfound respect for the hard-hitting Cougars.
Head coach Andrew Beam sent his players to the Escalon sideline, where they joined the cheerleaders and the crowd in one final singing of the EHS Alma Mater for the 2021 campaign.
See stories, photos from the NorCal competition in the Dec. 8 issue of The Times.