Ferguson, running game, leads Knights past the Warriors


Rainy conditions? No problem.

The Menlo School football team leaned on its running game and a stifling defense to turn back South San Francisco 45-0 in a PAL Ocean Division matchup on homecoming Friday.

The Knights (2-1, 6-1) host Sequoia next Friday. Sequoia lost to Half Moon Bay, 41-40, in a PAL battle of unbeatens.

Typically employing a spread attack, the wet conditions made mixing up the attack more challenging for Menlo.

Using senior running back Charlie Ferguson, who scored four touchdowns and rushed for 159 yards in 16 carries, the Knights turned the sloppy conditions in their favor.

Ferguson has 17 rushing touchdowns on the season and 22 total TDs for the season.

"The great thing about knowing how to run the ball is that when you have to, you can do it and you can do it very well," Menlo quarterback Hayden Pegley said. "We're happy to walk away with 45 points but we're happy that we could walk away with a 0 on the opponents; it's something we take pride in... defense first."

Menlo's defense held SSF to 101 total yards. Junior JH Tevis amassed 11 tackles, including four sacks. Cooper Stewart posted a sack, and he and Baily Deeter, also a junior, each posted nine tackles. Xavier Dickinson contributed eight tackles and recovered a fumble.

"A big thing coaches emphasized this week was to come out strong, to be consistent, and to finish. We just came out and did all those things. (South San Francisco) is a good team," Tevis said. "We came out strong, did our jobs and took control of the game against a good team."

The Knights are well aware how tight the PAL-Ocean race is and how any week is up for grabs.

"Anyone can come out of nowhere, so if you put yourself in a two-loss situation within the first three games of the season, you're not in any way guaranteed a playoff spot, so I think that's motivation," Pegley added. "I think we can motivate ourselves game to game (regardless of) the playoff implications, and I think that's something you have to do as a team is find the motivation, and I'm glad we were able to do that for all the fans and especially the class of 1966!"

Certainly, the Knights made them proud.

"I like where we are, but we have a long way to go, and we have a big week ahead," Tevis said. "We have to keep it going. I'm happy for the team, and really proud."

In another PAL Ocean Division contest, The King's Academy beat Woodside, 48-51, despite over 300 rushing yards from Marcelous Chester-Riley.

Paul Jackson III scored three times, including a late score to lift Palo Alto (2-2, 3-5) past previously unbeaten Wilcox, 25-21, in a SCVAL De Anza Division game.

Jackson rushed for 98 yards on 20 carries and caught a pass for 19 yards. Jackson Chryst was 6 of 11 passing for 120 yards and rushed for another score.

Jackson Hall caught three passes for 76 yards, while Paul Thie caught a pair for 25 yards and rushed for another 17 for a total of 42 yards.

Josh Brigel and Peter Snodgrass each recorded 10 tackles for the Vikings.

In the SCVAL El Camino Division, Gunn (0-4,2-6) lost to Lynbrook, 47-6.

In other games, Stuart Hall beat Pinewood, 42-0, and host Trinity Christian topped East Palo Alto Phoenix, 54-8.

— Pam McKenney/Menlo Athletics

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