MANTECA – Late in the second quarter Thursday Matt Wilkerson got a bit more than the 8 yards he needed for a first down when he lumbered 36 yards for a touchdown to give the Manteca freshmen the lead for good in a 22-8 Valley Oak League football victory over Kimball at Guss Schmiedt Field.
The beginning of the end started when the Oakdale Mustangs opened the second half at their own 10-yard line and methodically chewed up nearly the entire third quarter, marching 90 yards for an eventual A.C. Brown touchdown that stripped Sierra High of a chance at victory in a 33-15 defeat Friday at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium.
Homecoming is often a time for celebration.
The Manteca Buffaloes could not have drawn up a more perfect opening to the Valley Oak League season, blasting the Kimball Jaguars 62-0 in their first-ever VOL contest Friday at Kimball High.
RIPON - Hilmar High's grand return to the Trans Valley League wasn't so grand.
LE GRAND – Ripon Christian received a rude Southern League welcome from the host Le Grand Bulldogs on Friday.
Over the past decade, there has been one constant amongst the elite teams in the Valley Oak League and that's the fact that to become the champion, one usually has to beat the champion. In Friday's VOL opener for Sierra and Oakdale highs, that hurdle will be cleared immediately by the winning squad.
Oakdale and Sierra are the defending co-champions of the Valley Oak League.
For two programs that struggled mightily throughout the 2009 season, that is not the case thus far this campaign. Lathrop High is enjoying back-to-back victories for the first time in school history and the East Union Lancers have not been 3-0 since Bill Clinton was president.
Graduation turnover along with some injuries to key players has suddenly made the always-competitive Trans Valley League race a wide-open one - for second place.
WESTON RANCH - The Cougars (2-1) finally put together a solid overall effort at Podesto Field.
Pigs are not flying and the cows are nowhere near home.
LATHROP - With a solid lead in the fourth quarter, it looked like Lathrop High was well on its way to a second straight victory.
MODESTO – After turning a two-touchdown deficit into a one-point lead late in the fourth quarter, Manteca High senior Michael Timmons intercepted Christian Kahler's pass at midfield, prefacing Manteca's final defensive stand in the Buffaloes' second consecutive come-from-behind victory, 34-33 over Enochs, at Johansen High.
Early mistakes and all-around youth hurt Ripon High in its non-league finale against Argonaut in Jackson Friday.
The Manteca-Sierra football rivalry smolders and smokes throughout the spring and summer months, before bursting into flames each autumn.
David Reyes pulled in a 62-yard scoring pass from Caden Worth for the Sierra freshmen on the game's first play from scrimmage Thursday to set the tone in a 46-0 Valley Oak League freshman win over East Union at Dino Cunial Field.
Following a scoreless first half the Sierra Timberwolves scored two third-quarter touchdowns to claim a 14-6 victory over East Union High in Valley Oak League sophomore football action.
Smiling faces after a losing football game?
East Union lined up in victory formation on its own 5, down 35-21 in the final seconds of its intra-city duel at Sierra's Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium.
Eric Reis was thrilled to be back at Guss Schmiedt Field.
SALIDA – Ripon defensive backs Mario Roach and Nick Price arrived late to their mark, crashing into one another at the goal line.
DENAIR - Billy Marr threw for a season-high 256 yards and four touchdowns as the Ripon Christian offense finally found its groove in a 31-0 rout of Denair.
East Union considered last week's game with Lathrop to be its "Super Bowl."
When Manteca coach Eric Reis sat Dakarai Charles for the first half against Lathrop, he hoped to rest his quarterback's banged-up knee.
Oakdale refused to let Hunter Johnson, a preseason all-Sac-Joaquin Section selection at wide receiver, beat them through the air.
RIPON – When Ryan Fugit looks at film of Modesto Christian, the Ripon star sees flashes of monsters past.
RIPON – The air of confidence has been sucked out of the Ripon Christian locker room.
R.J. Tisdell ground out 106 yards on 10 carries with a 45-yard touchdown run to help lead Lathrop to a 24-13 win over host East Union on Friday in sophomore Valley Oak League action at Dino Cunial Field.
Keonnee Linnell directed the Lathrop freshmen to a 40-6 win over visiting East Union on Thursday in Valley Oak League at Dino Cunial Field.