But Oseguera’s gutty performance helped keep the Panthers 100 percent in the win column.
A 93-yard strike from senior quarterback Troy Amate to Oseguera broke a fourth quarter tie and boosted Antioch's record to 5-0 for the first time since 1996.
“I’m so proud of these guys,” said Oseguera following the 26-14 victory. “Northgate gave it to us good, but I think we just out-hearted them.”
This was Oseguera’s first game back after hurting his ankle in the first quarter of a Sept. 9 game against Clayton Valley.
Tied at 14 early in the fourth quarter, the Broncos (1-4) looked like they were headed for a long drive into Panther territory. As the drive stalled at the Antioch 38-yard line, Northgate faced fourth-and-14.
Broncos senior quarterback Shane Ryan hooked up with junior Brandon Lee, who evaded one tackle and headed upfield before a Panther defender jarred the ball loose around the 25 yard line. The football rolled all the way to the 4-yard line, as players from both teams tried to scoop up the loose pigskin and do something with it. Finally, a pile of bodies emerged near the goal line – possession going to Antioch.
Two plays later, Amate found the speedy Oseguera making a break for it down the middle of the field. Amate drew Oseguera’s coverage away with an impressive pump fake. Though the point after attempt failed, the Panthers led for the first time that night, 20-14.
“I was very happy,” Amate said. “I was sprinting down the field with him.”
Later in the fourth quarter, another Northgate fumble helped Antioch seal the victory. Around midfield, sophomore running back Eric Haynes took a handoff and tried to plow through the middle of the line. The ball popped out of Haynes’ grip and into the hands of Panthers senior lineman Kyle Clark, also one of the North Coast Section’s more talented wrestlers.
Working on a short field, Antioch marched down and scored on a 24-yard touchdown run by Amate, putting the finishing touches on the 26-14 win.
For the first time in 15 years, the Panthers will head into Bay Valley Athletic League play with an unblemished record. Antioch travels to Brentwood next week to face Heritage in its league opener.
“These guys know how to pull them out, come back and keep fighting,” head coach John Lucido said.
Antioch’s junior varsity team fell 20-6 to Northgate on Friday. The Panthers got on the board shortly before halftime on a touchdown pass from Alex Obias to Eric Meza. The loss dropped Antioch to 2-3.
“They’re a good team," said head coach Kevin Tracy, "but we should’ve won this game."