Newcomer Pierre Moudourou continued to impress. Seasoned veteran Ryheem Skinner was his reliable self.
Oh, yes, and Hector Gil-Garcia kicked an all-important field goal.
Moudourou, Hancock College's Offensive Player of the Game, caught two touchdown passes. Skinner, a Hancock sophomore and the game MVP, ran for two.
Meanwhile, Gil-Garcia kicked what proved to be the winning 29-yard field goal in the third quarter and Hancock College (barely) held off a San Bernardino Valley College rally for a 38-35 win in the American Championship Bowl the Bulldogs hosted at Righetti High School Saturday night.
Hancock (10-1) was two points away from a perfect season. The Bulldogs fell 22-21 to Ventura College in their second game of the season.
The Bulldogs won the Pacific League championship for the second straight year with a second straight 5-0 Pacific League campaign under veteran coach Kris Dutra. The Wolverines, who won the Mountain League title, finished 9-2.
Narrowly missing a perfect season didn't seem to matter to the happy Bulldogs afterward.
"Finally got one," said Hancock center R.J. Grice, a Lompoc High School graduate. Grice played in the American Championship Bowl last year which Hancock hosted, and lost, 35-14 to Southwestern College at Santa Maria High School.
Gil-Garcia's field goal Saturday night put the Bulldogs ahead 38-14 with 1:01 left in the third quarter.
The momentum turned after Kellen Pachot returned the ensuing kickoff to the Hancock 4.
The Wolverines scored on the last play of the quarter, and SBVC quarterback Armando Herrera threw an 18-yard touchdown pass to DeJuan Moon with 3:44 to play and a 39-yard scoring pass to Moon with 1:52 left.
SBVC touched the ball a yard too soon on the onside kickoff. Since the Wolverines were out of timeouts, that was it.
Moudourou caught a pass from Hancock quarterback Thomas Carr on the first possession of the game. A Wolverine tried to push him down at the SBVC 40. Moudourou stayed on his feet and raced in to complete a 76-yard scoring play.
Moudourou, stretching full out, grabbed a well-thrown ball by Carr and went in for a 42-yard touchdown play with 52 seconds left in the half. Hancock was up 28-7 at the break.
"I joined the team late, on Aug. 21," said Moudourou. "After all season, I finally got a chance."
He made the most of it. The Bulldogs threw to Moudourou last week for the first time this season. The 6-foot-3 freshman from Danbury, Connecticut responded by catching three touchdown passes.
Skinner ended his illustrious career at Hancock with a total of 130 yards on 20 carries. He bounced a run outside and ran around left end for a three-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. Skinner scored from a yard out in the second.
The sophomore from Clinton, North Carolina finished the regular season as the Southern California Football Association's American Division rushing leader.
He also finished his Hancock career with an end to his post-season drought. Skinner's Clinton High School team lost in the North Carolina state championship team his junior season. Skinner was the leading rusher for the Hancock team that lost in the 2017 American Championship Bowl.
There was a post-game melee between the teams after the game. Some spectators ran on to the field, and it took several minutes to get the adversaries separated.
The Wolverines, jeered off the field by some Hancock fans, did not attend the post-game awards ceremony. Herrera, who finished 25-for-47 passing for 338 yards, four touchdowns and an interception, was SBVC's Player of the Game.