Charlotte rolls to 3-0 district start



Joe Cantu tries to put a hit on the Benavides quarterback during Charlotte’s 58-0 rout on Oct. 9. GABRIEL ROMERO | PLEASANTON EXPRESS

Joe Cantu tries to put a hit on the Benavides quarterback during Charlotte’s 58-0 rout on Oct. 9. GABRIEL ROMERO | PLEASANTON EXPRESS

The Charlotte Trojans won their third-straight district game, something they haven’t done in 15 years.

The Trojans (3-1, 3-0) dominated the Benavides Eagles 58-0 on Friday night behind a stellar night from senior running back Max Rowland.

“All 11 of us on offense and defense were all executing our jobs,” Rowland said.

Rowland was effective on both sides of the ball, rushing for 135 yards and a touchdown. He also had a 31-yard interception for a score.

“We’re making a big statement right now. It’s been a long time since the Charlotte Trojans have been 3-0 in district,” Rowland said. “We’re going to try to make the playoffs.”

He said the team will keep working during the week to keep the momentum up moving forward.

“We have our eyes on going deep into the playoffs this year,” Rowland said.

The defense held the Eagles to 107 yards of total offense.

“We just lock down, execute and we don’t give up,” said running back Andru Castillo.

Andru Castillo (6) races past a Benavides defender during Charlotte’s 58-0 rout on homecoming. Castillo finished with 71 yards rushing, 70 yards receiving and four total touchdowns to help the Trojans to their first 3-0 start to district play in over 15 years. MARGARET GALLEGOS | PLEASANTON EXPRESS

Andru Castillo (6) races past a Benavides defender during Charlotte’s 58-0 rout on homecoming. Castillo finished with 71 yards rushing, 70 yards receiving and four total touchdowns to help the Trojans to their first 3-0 start to district play in over 15 years. MARGARET GALLEGOS | PLEASANTON EXPRESS

Castillo had 71 yards rushing and two touchdowns. He added 70 receiving yards and two touchdowns.

He got most of those yards on a big 44-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter.

Playing both sides of the ball, he thanked the offensive line for giving him time to get down field. The Trojans defense was in the backfield all night long.

Unofficially, Castillo had five tackles along with Rowland, who had six of his own. The defense pitched their second consecutive shutout.

“I expected it. I mean, with the guys that we have in there, I expected it,” Castillo said.

Head Coach Shawn Vowell said they didn’t want to put up that many points, but he knew if the Eagles gave the defense a chance to get the ball they would.

Chris Gonzales had a 15-yard fumble return for a touchdown. The defense had three forced turnovers

“As a Defensive Coordinator/ Head Coach, I am very proud,” Vowell said.

As of Friday night, the Trojans are tied for first place with D’Hanis.

“It’s a win and I’ll take it. My kids are going to enjoy it. We’ll come out tomorrow, we’ll run and we’ll watch tape and pass out helmet decals. But I’m getting ready for Bruni,” Vowell said.

He said he hears whispers from the players about if they go 3-0 in district, but he reminded the players it could all be gone in an instant.

“We could go 5-0, but COVID 19 could wipe us out at any given time. So, I’m taking each game one at a time,” Vowell said.

Vowell took some time after the game to admire the scoreboard. The 58-0 score lit up the field.

“That’s beautiful, I think I uncovered a sleeping giant. But now we are on to the next week,” Vowell said.

Quarterback Mario Campos had 28 yards rushing for one touchdown and 79 yards passing with two touchdowns.

“It’s been a while since we’ve been 3-0 in district and to win like this gives us hope that we can be district champions,” Campos said.

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