West Hills College Coalinga needed a victory on Saturday afternoon to improve its postseason chances. The host Falcons took a quick 14-0 lead against the Gavilan College Rams - and never looked back, enroute to a 52-12 win in the regular season finale.
The team will wait for Sunday's announcement of CCCAA postseason games, including several bowl games in Northern California. WHCC is also still alive for a co-championship in the American Division Golden Coast League, but would need Merced and Monterey Peninsula to lose on Saturday night.
Still, with the No. 2 strength of schedule of the 13 division teams, West Hills (6-3 overall, 4-2 GCL) is in solid position to earn its fourth consecutive bowl game appearance.
Falcons sophomore RB D'Andre Van Exel had a career-high 171 rushing yards and four touchdowns, leading a big day of superb individual performances.
Freshman WR Nick Williams added 112 receiving yards and a pair of TDs - including a 74-yarder.
The quarterback combo of freshman Myron Norfleet and sophomore J.T. Bradwell continued their efficient seasons leading the offense.
Norfleet completed 11-of-16 passes for 156 yards and two scores, while rushing for 26 yards and one TD. His 15th rushing score of the season leads all Northern California quarterbacks.
Bradwell was a perfect 7-for-7 in the air for 85 yards and a TD, and added 20 yards on the ground.
Sophomore LB Josh Parks continued his MVP-type campaign with a game-high 11 tackles (4 solo), 1.5 sacks for minus 11 yards, and two QB hits.
Freshman safetey Doniaj Smelker registered five tackles (one for loss), a forced fumble-and-recovery, and one pass breakup.
The Falcons dominated from the opening kickoff. They took the first drive 65 yards on 10 plays, capped by Van Exel's four-yard TD.
The Rams went three-and-out for negative five yards on their first drive. WHCC need only five plays to score again. Norfleet's three-yard score gave the Falcons a 14-0 lead with 7:35 remaining in the first quarter.
WHCC led 33-6 at halftime.
The Falcons had 31 first downs, compared to only 11 for the Rams. WHCC compiled 513 yards of total offense (only 180 for Gavilan) as the team showed balance with 241 yards passing and 272 rushing.
CCCAA bowl game pairings will be announced by the state office on Sunday and posted at westhillsfalcons.com.