East Union High kept pace in the Valley Oak League race, but needed a big play by Teejay Gordon to secure the hard-fought 31-21 win over Weston Ranch at Dino Cunial Field.
The Lathrop Spartans got a visit from the defending co-Valley Oak League champion Oakdale Mustangs and it got out of control in a hurry, with Oakdale laying a 49-0 beating on Friday.
The Ripon Christian Knights were no strangers to the Denair Coyotes.
Eric Reis couldn't wait to watch last week's epic East Union-Sierra rivalry game on film, perhaps more so as a football fan than as Manteca High's head coach scouting for strengths and weaknesses.
Misfortune has played an unfair role in Ripon High's less-than-stellar start to the season, but the Indians have an ample opportunity in front of them when they make the 13-mile trip to Escalon to take on the Cougars Friday at Engle Field.
The Sierra High sophomore football team provided its varsity teammates with a perfect intro to set up their thrilling victory over East Union, posting a dominating 55-6 thrashing of the Lancers sophomore team Friday at Sierra.
Garrett DeVillianueva set up a touchdown with a long punt return and scored on another to lead Sierra High to a 21-6 Valley Oak League freshman football victory over host East Union High on Thursday at Dino Cunial Field.
The big-time players made some big-time plays, but an unlikely hero emerged in Sierra High's 30-28 heart-pumping and much-needed win over persistent East Union Friday at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium.
When the preseason schedules ended and the East Union Lancers were toting around a perfect 3-0 record, some people felt that being 3-0 is only a big deal to the teams that aren't expected to be 3-0.
The game plan went accordingly for Manteca High on Friday.
Dunleavy Field is one of the more special venues in the Valley Oak League, but the Sonora Wildcats are never gracious hosts.
Things got off to a favorable start for Ripon Christian, but its good luck would not hold.
East Union thought it could win its season opener against Beyer at Modesto Junior College Sept. 3.
Mike James isn't buying the hype. Jeff Harbison is.
After putting together a weak performance over the first two quarters of their Valley Oak League football opener, the Sierra Timberwolves sophomores fought back, only to make it interesting in a 40-22 loss to Oakdale High Friday at Sierra High.
Will Kamps found solace in his teammates following the Ripon Christian Knights' Sac-Joaquin Section VI playoff loss to No. 1 seed Capital Christian.
Zak Burden made big plays with his arms and legs, and on the game's final sequence it was he who fittingly punctuated No. 10 Rio Linda's 49-44 upset of No. 2 Sierra in Friday's Sac-Joaquin Section Division III quarterfinal at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium.
SACRAMENTO -The better athletes won out on this day.
Down to their final play, Dakarai Charles threw toward the corner of the end zone with confidence.
Fade to black.
A year ago, Manteca put an emphatic stamp on its fourth Sac-Joaquin Section championship with a runaway victory over a first-time finalist.
Ripon Christian is well aware of what it's up against tonight.
Sophomores have long been a part of Sierra's winning formula this season, but when Brandon Arreola burst around the corner and into the end zone this was something new.
Behind the goal posts, shagging footballs blasted through the uprights during warm-ups, Sierra's Marissa LaQuaglia makes no illusions about her role on Friday nights.
Ripon Christian appeared to have an Andrew Brown clone in the form of junior tail back Brian Sytsma.
The third time was the charm for Eric Reis and his Manteca High football team.
Confetti wafted in the air above the home bleachers and players were met with hugs and high-fives at every turn.
GARDEN VALLEY – The Ripon Christian Knights relied on a strong second-half surge to roll past Golden Sierra in Friday's Sac-Joaquin Section Division VI playoff opener.
It was the kind of moment that can take the air out of a stadium.
By now, the Sac-Joaquin Section football playoff brackets have been dissected and analyzed by anyone with a rooting interest or a job to do.