With Tough Playoff Loss, Knights’ Football Focuses on the Bonds of Brotherhood


Photo courtesy of @bishops_athletics on Instagram

The Knights’ Varsity Football Team (8-3) experienced a particularly special season as they grew together.

Graham Walker, Staff Writer

The Knights’ varsity football season has been a truly special one for the players and coaches involved. The early stages of the season looked bleak, with the road ahead uncertain due to few players showing interest in joining the team and having a tough opening loss. However, the team showed amazing grit and determination, turning an uncertain season into a remarkable 8-3 record and just barely losing their first playoff game.

Starting quarterback William Fierro (‘23) said, “At the start of the season we were all pretty unsure of what was going to happen since we didn’t have enough lineman and numbers were low overall, but with the sacrifice of some players who switched to lineman this year and a big freshman class we were able to find strength in our numbers.” 

This season, the team saw a rise in student-athletes sacrificing work on their main sports to play football. “Many players who usually play different sports joined the team this year which was super helpful,” Fierro said. Four-year varsity player on both sides of the ball, Mike Houk (‘22) said that, “Slowly over the weeks more guys started coming out and the team started developing good chemistry.” 

“The Knights hadn’t found the winning formula in the early goings of  the season as they suffered a big loss in their opening game against Bishop’s rivals, La Jolla High School (Lossed 42-3). “Playing against La Jolla, taking a big loss was pretty detrimental to our team. Going into that game we were optimistic that we had a chance this season and so we were heartbroken especially because the school now viewed us as terrible. But the next couple games we started picking up wins and getting super close as a team,” Mike said.

A pivotal game both star players mentioned was a close win against University City (Won 20-18) “It really showed us that we could win big close games. It was a huge team win, everyone played super well together. At that point we were all best friends and we all were super happy to see each other, ate lunch together a lot and all just wanted to win super bad for each other. We just kept winning because we were all so confident in ourselves,” Mike said. Will explained that the UC game was meaningful because he thought it marked the sign of their true potential to close out big-time wins. Mike furthered this saying, “It was a huge team win, everyone played super well together. Everyone was trying hard and wanted to win badly. We’d go up against teams three times our size, weight wise and numbers wise but we’d still find a way to win because we were committed and tried hard every play,” Mike passionately spoke. 

The sendoff for the senior leaders on the team is always the hardest emotionally. Junior QB1 Will explained. “The seniors are amazing. These guys are role models for the entire program and showed everyone what true leaders are. They will leave the team having left a true impact on all of us,” Will said.

. In turn, Mike explained, “I remember being a freshman, sophomore, and junior and seeing the seniors leave; it’s terrible because you’re losing a brother pretty much. Overall, the season was so much better than I ever could have imagined team-wise, relationship-wise, fun-wise. I just can’t believe how well everything turned out, it was incredible.” 

Towards the end of the year the team suffered a really tough loss to Rancho Bernardo (15-14). “Every single person on the team was crying because we all knew how special this team was and how the huddle is going to be so different next year with so many guys missing. Just playing football with teammates you love is a super special experience and knowing that was our last opportunity to do that as the same team is heartbreaking especially for the younger guys.” 

Mike thought that the season turned out to be one of the most memorable he’s ever been a part of considering the Knight’s final record of 8-3. Thomas Muniz (‘22) (a four year varsity player and captain) said something similar. “This has been the most fun season. I love every single one of my guys, from the 27 freshman to the seven other seniors on the team. This season has been one to remember for everyone’s tremendous efforts,” said Thomas.

The future of the team is optimistic. “We had twenty-five freshman come onto the team this year; I can see this program being incredible over the next few years,” explained Mike. Will explained that this year, “we didn’t have a lot of seniors so this season was really a time for the younger players to learn as much as they could and to bond and get closer.” Mike adamantly spoke on the outlook of the team’s future: “With how close this whole team is and how much everyone wants to win for each other I just know that this team is going to grow into something amazing.” Thomas also said, “The future is bright for this young team and they are going to be a force to be reckoned with.”

Quarterback Will Fierro will be looking to fill the shoes of Knights’ legendary leaders before him. He explains that, “Next season we’re looking to improve as best we can and it starts with all the off-season work so we can come back where we left off instead of starting back at square one. What’ll help with that is the fact that all the players have some sort of bond with each other due to this season we just had.”