Who Rocks the House? – Inside Wilcox’s Homecoming Football Game Victory

Kiana Guanga


The Wilcox Chargers hosted the Milpitas Trojans on their home turf, Hazlett Field, in their annual Homecoming football game on Friday, October 7, 2022. Following the Junior Varsity team’s 34-21 victory over the Trojans, the class Homecoming floats were showcased – all of which followed the theme of a childhood story correlating with respective class colors. The Freshmen kicked off their first Homecoming as Red Riding Hood, the Sophomores as Winnie the Pooh, the Juniors as Peter Pan & Tinkerbell, and the Seniors wrapped up their Homecoming tradition as Alice in Wonderland. The 2022 Homecoming Court trailed behind the floats, led by Homecoming King Brian Ridder and Homecoming Queen Sofia Gentry. As 7:00 pm approached, the stands crammed up with students and family members electrified for one of the most hyped up events in the Wilcox community. 

Exhilarated spectators turned timid as the pre-game coin toss commenced. The Trojans prevailed and opted to punt to begin the competition. Starting off the momentum of Running Back Iyaad Ahammed’s long kick return, the Chargers were quick to intrude into Milpitas’ territory. A devious fake handoff by Quarterback Armand Johnson deceived defenders, making way for the 6’0 170 lb Senior to secure Wilcox’s first touchdown of the night, followed by a successful extra point conversion. Briefly following the Trojans’ kick return, the coerced Charger defensive line contained the visitors’ attempt of replicating their offensive performance on the previous possession and forced a punt back. Unlike their prior possession, Wilcox struggled to convert for another first down and the ball once again went back to the Trojans. The Chargers struggled defensively on the current Trojans’ possession, allowing the visitors to gain two first downs. Despite the struggle, the Chargers remained up 7-0 as the opening quarter came to a close. 

The following quarter bombarded Wilcox with penalties. Nevertheless, the pressure of the team’s offensive line allowed the Chargers to be carried back into the end zone by Junior Running Back Elijah Walker with 4:28 left in the half. Wilcox was able to prevent a similar scoring response from the Trojans and held them to a field goal attempt. Soon after Wilcox’s kick return, Armand Johnson’s sharp vision identified the wide-open Junior Wide Receiver Maulidi Saleh, who darted over half the length of the field off his reception for the Chargers’ third touchdown of the night. Johnson described how the connection between him and Saleh strengthened: “It was just dedication over the summer. We’ve been working [together] a lot and it showed tonight”.

A void still overwhelmed the Chargers on their scuttle back to the locker room. Remaining up 21-3 – less than a three-touchdown lead – was not enough; they craved exceeding domination in the most renowned game of the year. On their return to the field, the amplified crowd evoked a sense of motivation in the players – something they needed to arouse their spirits. “It’s always good to have a lively crowd. Hopefully they can continue coming out to our games”, Coach Paul Rosa remarked. 

The momentum the team developed at the half was immediately apparent in the third quarter. Elijah Walker elevated for a total of two touchdowns, putting the Chargers up 35-9 by the end of the quarter. Walker elaborated on what prompted his third-quarter breakout: “ The [offensive] line. I’ve got to trust them every play. In the first half I was struggling because I didn’t trust them enough, [in the] second half we came out [on] fire “. 

Tyson Bonilla took the ball into the end zone twice for the Chargers in the final quarter, bringing the team up to a whopping 48 points. The Chargers’ resilient defensive line forced the Trojans to remain scoreless in the second and fourth quarters, holding the visitors to just 9 points throughout the entire matchup. Wilcox’s large-margin victory sustained their undefeated 5-0 record – their longest winning streak to start the season since 2018 – and made the 2022 Homecoming football game one to remember.