The Student News Site of Burlingame High School

The Burlingame B

The Student News Site of Burlingame High School

The Burlingame B

The Student News Site of Burlingame High School

The Burlingame B

Football dominates first half to cruise past Arroyo

Henry Gardner
Sam Felton turns upfield in the first half against Arroyo. The senior running back finished the game with 51 yards on 8 carries.

When varsity football (1-2) was on the field for its non-league matchup against Arroyo High School (1-2), it was nearly impossible to tell that they had been routed by 37 points just a week earlier or had started the season by blowing a 16-point lead to a Capuchino team that hadn’t beaten the Panthers in almost two decades. 

Burlingame rebounded from the disappointing losses in dominant fashion, trouncing the Dons 54-30 for their first win of the regular season on Friday, Sept. 8. 

“The [losses were] tough,” head coach John Philipopoulos said. “We had a little bit of a hangover there. I think we’ve responded and that was evident this week, so we just got to keep building on that.”

Coming into the game, there was a sense of urgency, both on the sidelines and in the crowd — and the Panthers responded, asserting their dominance from the opening kickoff. 

Story continues below advertisement

On their first offensive possession, senior quarterback Eddie Gill, facing pressure from Arroyo’s defensive line, found senior running back Cole Quilici for a 49-yard touchdown pass to open the scoring. 

That would be a harbinger for things to come offensively. 

Later in the first quarter, the Panthers leaned on their rushing attack, led by senior back Angelo Medina, who capped off a lengthy drive with a four-yard score. 

“When I scored it was such a gritty, gritty run, and it just felt good,” Medina said.

Navigate Left
Navigate Right
  • Senior cornerbacks Sam Felton and Wade Kingsbury tackle sophomore running back Joseph Estes. The Panther defense was dominant in the fast half against Arroyo, not allowing any points and jumping out to a 34-0 lead.

  • Senior quarterback and kicker Eddie Gill prepares to send the football into the air on a kickoff in the third quarter. Gill had his strongest game under center in his varsity career on Sept. 8 against the Dons.

  • The Panthers take the field before their victory against the Dons. Burlingame came out ready to play in the first half, dominating the Dons on both sides of the ball.

Burlingame’s defense was also firing on all cylinders in the first half, overwhelming Arroyo’s offensive line and forcing turnovers. 

But it was the Panther’s success throwing the ball that blew the game open.

In the second quarter, junior Jake Flood caught a touchdown pass to give Burlingame a 21-point advantage. On the ensuing possession, Gill connected with senior tight end Zach Shapiro for 38 yards and his first touchdown reception of the season. 

“[Zach], he’s a difference-maker for us,” Philipopoulos said. “He’s one of the best players on the team and a premier player in our league.”

Just over a minute later, Gill found junior Luke Dimech streaking down the middle of the field for a 62-yard touchdown pass to close out the first half leading 34-0.

The offensive onslaught was a welcome sight for a Panthers team that had struggled to score points as of late, putting up just three in the previous six quarters and getting outscored 57-3 in that span. 

“Offensively we played well,” Philipopoulos said. “Our offensive line came together. A lot of guys stepped up today.”

The Dons fought back, scoring four touchdowns in the second half, but the deficit was insurmountable and the Panthers continued to find success on the ground, with Dimech, junior Lucas Kirk and Quilici finding the endzone once more. Qulici’s 89-yard score, his second touchdown of the game, fired up the players and coaches as they sprinted down the sideline with those on the field. 

“It was a great team win when you know the line was doing their part, while the running backs were blocking [well],” Medina said. “It was just a great all-around effort.” 

Philipopoulos emphasized that the squad could have finished the game better and there was plenty of room for improvement. Nevertheless, the game offered signs of encouragement up and down the roster. 

“We just got to keep working on consistency and working hard and practicing well and we’ve got to make sure that we’re staying healthy,” Philipopoulos said.

As the Panthers enjoyed a non-competitive second half, knowing the victory was already secured, there was a sense of relief and energy on the field. 

“It’s good to come out here and get our first victory and play well, but I would have liked to see the game end a little better,” Philipopoulos said. “We needed to get to 1-2 and more importantly, now we got to get to 2-2 heading into the bye [week], so it’s a big boost and we’re looking forward to next week.” 

This Friday, Sept. 15, Burlingame will take on Half Moon Bay High School, looking to build on their momentum and secure that critical second win. Medina, for one, is optimistic about the squad’s development as league play draws closer. 

“It’s a learning experience,” Medina said. “We’re all young men, and we’re all just learning from everything that happens, wins or losses. [We’re] always supporting each other. We all go a long way, it’s like a family out here. No other place I’d rather be.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Burlingame B
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Burlingame High School - CA. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
About the Contributors
Zachary Newman
Zachary Newman, Sports Editor
Zachary Newman is a junior and second-year journalism student. He is excited to be the B's sports editor this year and continue to improve the sports coverage in the paper. Zachary spends the majority of his time outside of school on the golf course. He also likes to play with his dog and cheer on his favorite sports teams.
Henry Gardner
Henry Gardner, Staff Reporter
Henry Gardner is a sophomore at BHS and a first year journalism student. In his free time he likes to do photography, play lacrosse, and spend time with his friends. Henry is excited to take photos of school events and write about topics that interest him.
Donate to The Burlingame B
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Burlingame B Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *