Football Senior Night rescheduled to first round of CCS

Avi Srinivasan, Senior Staff Writer

The Palo Alto High School varsity football team poses for a team photo after last Friday’s win against Milpitas high school. Paly’s senior night game that was set to take place 7 p.m. today was rescheduled to next week in the first round of the Central Coast Section playoffs. The cancellation was caused due to a forfeit by Jefferson high school, but the junior varsity game will still take place. According to senior linebacker Luke Young, the Vikings’ morale is high for the upcoming tournament. “We tried to keep a try to keep our spirits high even when we were losing, but it was hard to,” Young said. “It’s definitely gotten a lot easier [after we won] and we’re really excited to see what we can do next week.” (Photo: Maxwell Zhang)

Varsity Football Senior night will be next Thursday during the first round of the Central Coast Section playoffs after Jefferson High School’s varsity team forfeited today’s game due to a lack of players.

Before the cancellation, the game was scheduled for 7 p.m. today at home in a non-league game. The junior varsity game is still set to take place against Jefferson at 6 p.m. 

According to Paly head coach David DeGeronimo the decision to move senior night was made Tuesday after much discussion.

“There was a lot of emails back and forth between parents and all the stakeholders about what we would do [after Jefferson forfeited],” DeGeronimo said. “For football, we decided that actually scheduling [senior night] into the playoff game next week would be the best.”

Senior night is an event honoring the seniors on each sports team and includes a celebration of the players’ time and contributions towards the team with speeches by coaches and acknowledgments by parents. Both Paly Dance and Cheer teams also had senior night planned for Thursday’s Varsity football game, but now will take place during the Junior Varsity game.

According to senior Dance team member Bella Daly, the change in game level for senior night is disappointing.

“We’ve been working for several weeks on our piece and JV games aren’t really the same as varsity game so definitely really disappointed,” Daly said. “Senior night is something I’ve been looking forward to literally since freshman year, and this was kind of our last game as a team, so it’s pretty sad.”

Daly also said the team will only perform at halftime instead of cheering throughout the game as usual. 

According to senior linebacker Luke Young, although he was excited to have his senior night before the playoffs, he still is primarily focusing on doing well in CCS.

“We can’t dwell on it too much, we’re not really not that upset about it and we’ll make it happen,” Young said. “We’re looking forward to it, but we’re more looking forward to the game than the celebration.”

After winning their past two games against Milpitas and Mountain View, the Vikings narrowly secured the fourth and last spot in the playoffs despite a rocky 0-3 start to the season.

DeGeronimo believes the team needs to prioritize preparing for its upcoming CCS games in order to match the competition.

“We’re [the team] pretty aligned competitively with the teams in the division we’re going to be in,” DeGeronimo said. “I told the guys that now we have a new goal of winning CCS and that shot should be it.”

The official bracket for CCS will be decided this Sunday after other qualifying teams finish playing their matches this weekend and finalize point totals, which determines placement in the bracket. 

In total, 35 teams will be participating in CCS, with addition to five open spots for a few private and public schools. Each league participating is separated by an “A”, “B”, or “C” category where four teams in each “A” league are able to qualify, two teams in “B” league, and one team from “C” league. This DeAnza league, which Paly plays in, is an “A” league.

Young said despite the intensity and challenges presented by CCS, he and the team have strong spirits and a hopeful attitude.

“We definitely didn’t start off the season at the the right note, but I think we’ve gotten back on track and I’m really looking forward to what we can do,” Young said. “I think we can make some noise in the end in the division that we get placed in in the playoffs, so it’s all uphill from here.”