SANTA MARIA — The Allan Hancock College Bulldogs football team was crowned champions of the American Championship Bowl on Saturday night when they defeated San Bernardino Valley College, 38-35. The score was not entirely indicative of how the game went, a number of questionable calls allowed the Wolverines to stay in the game in the second half after trailing 28-7 at halftime.
While it was the Wolverines that came into the game with the third-ranked passing offense in California it was the Bulldogs that set off fireworks through the air first as Atascadero alum Tommy Carr and American Championship Bowl offensive player of the game Pierre Moudourou connected on a 76-yard touchdown on their third offensive play of the game. Carr rolled out to his right on third-and-medium and hit Moudourou 15-yards downfield, he broke one tackle and outran the entire Wolverines’ defense for the first of his two long touchdowns.
“I have to give all the credit to my buddy Pierre, he’s the man,” Carr said about the play after the game. “And he got the player of the game and he clearly deserved it. Yes, I might have made the pass but he made everything else happen after that so all the credit goes to him and not to mention my O-line.”
Carr finished the game going 10-for-15 for 242 yards and two touchdowns.
SBVC fumbled on their next offensive play and American Championship Bowl MVP Ryheem Skinner punched it in three plays later to extend the Bulldogs lead to 14-0.
SBCV scored their first points on their next drive thanks to some confusion in the Hancock secondary. The Wolverines ran a fake wide receiver screen, letting their outside receiver leak out down the field uncovered and Wolverines quarterback Armando Herrera hit his receiver in stride as he did all night long.
The Bulldogs’ secondary responded on the next drive by intercepting Herrera as Jaquez McWilliams out jumped the SBVC receiver and returned the ball 44 yards but AHC missed their field goal attempt on the ensuing drive.
After a couple hectic series from each team, AHC went back to their bread and butter of pure smash mouth football and ran the ball on eight of their 10 plays en route to another Skinner touchdown run and pushing the score to 21-7.
Former Greyhound Kameron Brown made his presence felt on the next drive as he sacked Herrera on second down and forced the Wolverines to go three and out, giving the ball back to AHC with 2:50 to go until halftime.
Head coach Kris Dutra dialed up another pass and Carr again hit Moudourou, this time for 42 yards, and AHC ran into the locker room up 21 points riding a tidal wave of confidence.
Carr added another touchdown on the Bulldogs second possession of the second half on a quarterback keeper from 9 yards out, putting AHC up 28-7 in the third quarter.
It was at this time that the officials started losing control of the game as tempers from the SBVC sideline began to flare. Each play in the second half seemed to end with a discussion from the referees followed by a chorus of “boo’s” from the home crowd. In the game, 19 penalties were called for a total of 197 yards.
The Wolverines were able to add two quick scores thanks to a couple of long returns from their special teams and a third after recovering an onside kick, but in the end, AHC held on to win, 38-35.
“That is about the first time that I have seen them play a full game together,” Dutra said following the game. “Usually they come together for about a half but they really came together in the last month or so and it has been special to watch.”
Offensive MVP Moudourou finished the game with five catches for 163 yards and two touchdowns and MVP Skinner racked up 130 yards on 20 carries and also added two touchdowns.
“Getting a ring, it’s choking me up,” Carr said after the game. “That means so much to me, this game means so much to me, and I couldn’t have done it without these guys playing next to me.”
Carr is a redshirt sophomore and will be looking for a football home come next season.