With Terra Nova coming off a thudding 45-7 win over Bishop O'Dowd (Oakland), St. Ignatius High School knew it would need to shrug off its season-opening 31-20 loss to Marin Catholic in a hurry.
The host Wildcats played hard, rolled up plenty of yards and even put up 33 points on Terra Nova.
But four turnovers and the combination of Anthony Gordon and Jaylend Jones were too much to overcome, as St. Ignatius dropped to 0-2 after suffering a 50-33 loss to Terra Nova on Saturday afternoon.
Gordon, Terra Nova's junior quarterback, was 25-of-33 for 370 yards and three touchdowns, and Jones - who returned the opening kickoff 95 yards for a score - had eight catches for 225 yards and four total touchdowns for the Tigers.
"They have a very good team and we knew that," St. Ignatius head coach John Regalia said. "[Terra Nova] is a very talented football team, and they started fast."
Despite being down 21-7 at halftime, the Wildcats came out of the locker room and looked primed to make a comeback.
The Wildcats opened the second half with a nine-play, 73 yard-drive, as quarterback Ryan Hagfeldt capped the possession with a 29-yard touchdown pass to Joe Lang.
Playing in just his second game as a varsity quarterback, Hagfeldt was 27-of-43 for 300 yards with two touchdowns and three interceptions.
But it took Terra Nova only 1:20 to answer St. Ignatius' scoring drive.
Facing a third-and- 8 from the Terra Nova 46-yard line, Gordon connected with Jones on a beautiful fade route for 30 yards. The ensuing play, Gordon hit Nick Pierotti down the seam for a 25-yard touchdown.
The backbreaker for St. Ignatius came with 51 seconds left in the third quarter.
After Andrew Ferrero drilled a 24-yard field goal to bring the Wildcats within 11 at 28-17, Terra Nova put it out of reach as soon as it got the ball back.
On first-and-10 from the Terra Nova 32-yard line, Gordon hit Jones on a quick slant, and Jones outraced the St. Ignatius defense for a 68-yard touchdown.
"We needed to communicate well on defense," Regalia said. "It wasn't due to a lack of effort, but it comes down to communicating and making sure we are in the right positions, and I definitely take responsibility for that as a coach."
The Gordon-Jones duo hooked up in the fourth quarter for another touchdown - this time for 73 yards - and Terra Nova was well on its way to a win that meant a lot to the school from Pacifica.
"This is what we've aspired to do since the origin of the [Central Coast Section] Open Division," said Terra Nova head coach Bill Gray. "We've been working for this, and we're not there yet, but this is a big step in the right direction. It's a great day for public school football."