MIS­SION PREP

The Tribune (SLO) (Sunday) - - Sports -

against them.

‘BEST RUN­NING BACK ON THE CEN­TRAL COAST’

Ju­nior run­ning back Brian Kowall is hav­ing a break­out sea­son.

Pat Laird — the stand­out run­ning back for Cal and for­mer Tri­bune County Player of the Year — is Kowall’s cousin. It’s easy to see the re­sem­blance.

“They have very sim­i­lar styles, but they’re also very dif­fer­ent in other ways, too,” Schus­ter said. “Brian’s his own guy, he’s very unique, but there’s no ques­tion he’s very spe­cial. There’s a lot of schools in­ter­ested and for good rea­son.”

Kowall has 1,179 yards and 23 touch­downs on 138 car­ries in 11 games this sea­son. Five of those touch­downs came in Fri­day’s game against Riverdale Chris­tian.

“I think Brian Kowall is the best run­ning back on the Cen­tral Coast, and I can make a very easy ar­gu­ment to de­fend it,” Schus­ter said.

The Roy­als showed that they can score in other ways, too. Mark Ro­driguez threw for two touch­downs, each to Mace Sher­lock, be­fore Kowall took over.

Lo­gan Stout re­cov­ered a blocked punt for a score, and Dal­ton Strouss had an in­ter­cep­tion. Con­nor Borges and Bray­den Farr each had a sack.

WHAT’S NEXT

The Roy­als will play host to Fresno Chris­tian (10-1), whose only loss came ear­lier in the sea­son to Mis­sion Prep, in the eight-man cham­pi­onship game. Fresno Chris­tian beat Or­cutt Acad­emy 53-34 to ad­vance.

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