By Karen Sanchez
Star quarterback Lavell McCullers stole the show against the American River Beavers with a passing onslaught to lead the Rams to victory on Saturday, Sept. 17. With a final score of 51- 36, City College improved to 2-1 on the young season.
The Rams started off strong as McCullers’ first completion went for a touchdown less than five minutes into the game. A missed extra point would come back to bite them, though, as the Beavers took a 7-6 lead after a fast paced drive ended with an easy one-yard walk-in touchdown.
Determined to relive their last victory, the Rams would end up pulling away in the second quarter. They opened the quarter with a dink-and-dunk 73-yard drive, ending with a touchdown caught by receiver Kevin Shaa from 10 yards out. The Beavers didn’t take long before scoring another touchdown, putting them up again by one point.
The momentum shifted City’s way after American River unsuccessfully attempted an onside kick to try and steal a possession from the Rams. When the Rams recovered the unsuspected kick, they took advantage of the short field, as Namane Modise ultimately finding the endzone on an 18-yard reception from McCullers
After a defensive three and out, American River got a booming punt that pinned City at their own 8-yard line. What seemed like a burden ended up being a huge 92-yard touchdown on the first play of the drive to sophomore Easton Winston, giving the Rams a 27-14 lead at halftime.
With eight minutes left in the third quarter, the Beavers answered back and landed a touchdown in the hands of receiver Damen Wheeler Jr., but the Rams still held the lead 33-21 heading into the fourth quarter.
Less than a minute into the fourth, McCullers added a rushing touchdown to his already impressive game, giving the Rams a 39-21 lead. The Beavers, in an attempt to catch up, earned a safety followed by an exciting 52-yard kickoff return that brought them within 10 points of City.
McCullers quickly dashed their hopes of catching up by throwing his fifth touchdown pass of the night, this one again to Winston, who caught a total of four touchdown passes. With the scoreboard reading 45-29, the Rams had just about put the game out of reach for the Beavers.
McCullers threw for a total of 566 yards to go along with one rushing touchdown and six touchdown passes, including the last pass in the closing minute that polished off the Rams’ winning effort, leading the bench to start celebrating even with the clock still running.
Head Coach Jimmy Collins walked up to the middle of the field to congratulate the team on their victory.
“I think it was fantastic, our quarterback really played the game,” said Coach Collins. “We had a great training week and we still have to work more. We’re not where we should be yet, but we’re definitely getting there.” Collins also stated how ecstatic they were to be able to play against the Beavers and how they prepared for that day with an intense training week.
The star quarterback will be leading the Rams into their next game against Chabot College on Saturday, Sept. 24 at George M. Rush Stadium hoping to ride the momentum from their last two wins..
“We are gonna keep working, it was a nice team and a nice game,” McCullers said.