When Hart's last drive of the game stalled at the 11-yard line Friday night against Arroyo Grande, Coach Rick Scott pointed, which meant it was time to try a field goal.
In jogged the field-goal unit, led by a disheveled No. 28 carrying a kicking tee.
Watching from the sideline was a cold John Bauccio, a senior receiver who had just relinquished his own uniform to kicker Jim Harper for the sake of a possible playoff win. Harper missed on his attempt at a 25-yard field goal that would have given the Indians a two-point lead with 1:45 left. The kick was short, and Arroyo Grande won, 15-14.
Harper, whose left arm was in a harness since injuring his shoulder in Hart's quarterfinal win over St. Anthony, kicked two conversions in the first half. At halftime, however, team doctors decided Harper could go no further, and he returned to the sideline for the second half without his gear.
But, with the game and a berth in the Northwestern Conference final on the line, Bauccio went into his striptease and Harper went into the game.
"I gave him my pads because I knew I wasn't going to go in," said Bauccio, who caught one pass all season. "I thought it was more important for the team to win than me getting into the game."
So Bauccio, who was erroneously reported as having attempted the field goal, handed over his pads, uniform, helmet and mouthpiece.
"It was an emergency situation," he explained.
Scott said he never knew what was happening until Harper, who had made seven of 11 field-goal attempts this season, including a 51-yarder, was on the field.
Despite the bitter loss, Scott was still able to find humor in it.
"I don't have anything to do with the kicking game," he said. "All I do is point when it's time to kick.
"That's why when I vote for rule changes I'm going to take kicking out of it. We'll call it handball. We'll leave all the feet to soccer."
Dis-Hart-ened: When Burroughs quarterback Jeff Barrett stepped off the team bus Friday night he was met with bad news.
Fresh from his own team's 26-16 victory over El Segundo, Barrett was told Burroughs' opponent in the Northwestern Conference final would be Arroyo Grande and not Foothill League nemesis Hart.
"I was really disappointed," he said. "No, I was mad really."
Burroughs was soundly whipped, 19-0, by Hart when the teams met Oct. 23, and Barrett was outplayed by Hart quarterback Darren Renfro, who passed for 251 yards. By contrast, Barrett threw for only 82 yards.
"I just remember the one thing Renfro said when they beat us," Barrett said, "about who the best Indians were."
Both teams are nicknamed the Indians.
Instead, Burroughs will face the Eagles of Arroyo Grande, not such a bad situation after all once Barrett had a chance to think about it.
"I wish we could have played Hart again," he said. "After the loss, it's hard, but we figured it's better to lose in league and win the championship.
"We set our goals, one was to make it to the championship. We did and they didn't."
The heat isn't on: There seems to be a chill in the air, and that's just the way Cleveland Coach Steve Landress likes it.
A cool breeze wafted across the Harbor City College field Friday night as the Cavaliers blew away Banning, 17-14, in a City Section 4-A Division first-round playoff game.
Banning, a perennial City football power, had not lost to a Valley team since 1978 when Granada Hills, with John Elway at quarterback, defeated the Pilots, 24-14.
"It's nice to put the light out of the Pilot," Landress quipped after Cleveland's initial victory over Banning. "I've been in the Coliseum a couple of times, and that's an incredible feeling, but this is the greatest victory Cleveland's ever had in football."
Landress previously co-coached Manual Arts to two City 3-A titles. The Cavaliers cold-cocked Banning when quarterback Jamie Grossman connected with tight end Chaka Milby for a one-yard touchdown with 48 seconds left. The last time Banning failed to make it past the first round was in 1974.
"It's like taking out Muhammad Ali or Mike Tyson with a left hook," Landress said.
Golden goose eggs: Thought to be the strongest contingent when the Coastal Conference playoffs began, the Golden League instead laid a giant golden egg.
So, the golden child turned out to be the Marmonte League. Members Channel Islands and Thousand Oaks meet Friday for the conference championship at Thousand Oaks, after both teams dominated their interconference matchups.
Channel Islands whipped Canyon, 42-6, in Friday's semifinal. Thousand Oaks, meanwhile, easily handled Antelope Valley, 34-14, and the week before embarrassed Palmdale, 31-7.
The odd team out is Marmonte League member Westlake, which did not receive the conference's at-large bid. The berth instead went to the Golden League's Quartz Hill, which was eliminated by Channel Islands, 27-19, in the first round.
At the time, both teams had 6-4 overall records. Quartz Hill finished its league season 2-3, while Westlake was 4-2, including a 7-6 win over Thousand Oaks.
The tie-breaker used was strength of schedule.
However, Westlake Coach George Contreras stood behind the Southern Section's decision when the bids came out and still does.
"I think the CIF made the right decision based on what they had this year," he said. "But our top two teams can obviously play with anybody in the conference.
"The proof is in the pudding, and all four Golden League teams have been beaten by Marmonte teams."