One week ago, Justin Posthuma played the game of his life, but it wasn’t enough for a win. On Friday, the senior quarterback teamed with sophomore receiver Travis Talianko to engineer a gritty 60-yard drive, capped by a three-yard touchdown catch by Talianko that spurred the Golden Knights to a dramatic, come-from-behind 27-23 nonleague victory over host Loyola at L.A. Valley College.
“Our offense kind of stalled in the second half and it’s a different environment out here,” said Posthuma, who completed 14 of 20 passes for 162 yards and two touchdowns, while also rushing for a team-high 75 yards and another score in 17 carries. “We just had to battle and put together a drive. We willed ourselves to a victory and it was a team effort. I definitely was not on today. The receivers were making me look good.”
St. Francis, the third-ranked team in the CIF Southern Section Western Division, improved to 6-1 and rebounded from a nailbiting 28-24 loss to Sherman Oaks Notre Dame the week prior, in which a final Golden Knights drive came up short of a game-winning score.
Loyola (3-4) had taken a 23-20 lead with 8:38 to play and had pushed its way back into Golden Knights territory before running into a third-and-11 situation at the St. Francis 39-yard line.
Sophomore linebacker Ryan McAleenan intercepted Loyola quarterback Jerry Neuheisel at the 35-yard line and returned the play to the Golden Knights 40.
St. Francis then had 4:30 to drive 60 yards after totaling just 19 yards of total offense in the second half up to that point.
Posthuma and the Golden Knights proved to be up to the challenge.
“It’s not always the prettiest thing in the world with him, but he’s a winner,” St. Francis Coach Jim Bonds said of Posthuma. “That’s what I love about him. He finds a way to win and he doesn’t care what it looks like as long as we come out on the winning side.”