In a season that has already been mired by controversy for the Pierce College football team, the Brahmas can still go to the American Division Bowl with a win over Glendale next week after a loss to Santa Monica.
Despite the Santa Monica Corsairs defeating the Pierce College Brahmas 37-13, it was announced after the game that SMC is ineligible for a bowl game due to recruiting violations against Santa Monica.
According to South California Football Association commissioner Jim Sartoris, Santa Monica head coach Gifford Lindheim was part of a high school all star game. The SMC football program was put on one-year probation that excludes them from playing in a postseason bowl game.
Santa Monica can still win the conference championship if they can beat Antelope Valley at home this week. In the event Santa Monica loses then the winner of next week’s Pierce and Glendale game will be declared the conference champions.
The Brahmas were defeated once again by Santa Monica and have lost to the Corsairs for the sixth year in a row.
But because of SMC’s ineligibility the Brahmas can still go to the American Division Bowl with a win over Glendale and play the winner of the Mountain division of the Western State Conference. The winner of that game will be declared the American Division champions.
The game itself was a pretty forgettable night for Pierce as the offense came out stagnant scoring only 10 points in the first half and three points in the second with a field goal coming at the beginning of the third quarter from kicker Daniel Schlorf.
The Brahmas lost starting center Daniel Barajas for the game due to a knee injury suffered in the second quarter.
“He’s probably the best center in the conference,” head coach Efrain Martinez said. “It was tough, that one was tough”.
Wide receiver Shaquan Hall who has been one of Pierce’s most reliable receivers all season long dropped six passes.
Hall wasn’t the only one to blame for Pierce’s struggles as quarterback Nick Arbuckle threw two interceptions including a late pick in the fourth quarter.
The Corsairs shut down Arbuckle who finished the game 14-31 throwing only one TD along with two interceptions for only 157 yds.
“The offense really let the defense down tonight,” Martinez said.
As for Santa Monica, the Corsairs had a field day with the Brahmas in the fourth quarter scoring 23 unanswered points, with two touchdowns coming off of turnovers including a fumble from punt returner Jay’Onn Myles with less then seven minutes left to play to hand the momentum right to the Corsairs.
“Pierce is awesome,” said Corsair head coach Gifford Lindheim. “They do a great job coaching here, they are talented. We were just fortunate to be here tonight.”
The Corsairs were highlighted by a trick play late in the fourth quarter when SMC ran a reverse. Rather than a running back or wide receiver, the ball was instead given to sophomore offensive tackle Maurquice Shikir who threw a 31-yd ball downfield to increase the Corsair lead to 14.
“We had been working on that play all season,” said Shikir. “I guess it was the right time to throw it.”
Even with all the glitz, including a post game celebratory dance that extended 50 yds at John Shepard Stadium, none of it matters for the Corsairs because they are ineligible.
Despite a horribly played game, Pierce will be bowl eligible if they can beat Glendale this Saturday at the last regular season game at 7 p.m. in John Shepard Stadium.