Few in the area match the pregame ambiance of East Union High home football games.
Manteca High opened its season Friday with a lopsided 55-7 non-league win at Galt.
LINDEN - With 1:37 remaining Friday night and visiting Ripon clinging to a seven-point lead and facing a fourth down and 15 yards to go from the Linden 28-yard line, Kyle Wengel spotted Cole Herrin with a touchdown pass to put the game out of reach and give the Indians a 42-28 win.
There are similarities between the East Union and Orestimba 2010 football teams.
RIPON – Ripon Christian High's colors are blue and gold.
After putting together a solid team effort in its season-opener against Enochs, Sierra High was forced to cope with a 33-20 loss to the Eagles on its home field Friday.
Games such as the one played at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium Friday are labeled "defensive struggles," but the defenses weren't doing the struggling.
RIPON – It was far from perfect, but good enough. Ripon High pushed across its third touchdown just before halftime, jumping out on the Ceres Bulldogs 21-7 and never looked back in a 28-7 victory to open the season.
Three area squads got a head start in the 2010 season when the Sac-Joaquin Section revamped the football schedule to include Week Zero contests, but they combined for zero wins going into Week 1.
The Manteca Junior Buffaloes varsity squad opened its 2011 season with a 14-6 victory over the Denair Lions Saturday in the Trans Valley Youth Football League.
Week after week there was a growing belief in Lancer Land that East Union High's football team could actually make a run at a postseason berth.
The Valley Oak League's top two offensive players of 2010 graduated from Manteca High's co-championship team last May.
At one point in the 2010 season Sierra High stood with a dismal 2-4 record and its postseason hopes were fading fast. The Timberwolves would get it going, running the table and landing a postseason berth. This season, Sierra is hoping to get it going right from the start.
Varsity football at Lathrop High School is nothing new.
Throughout Mike Hale's four-year tenure as Weston Ranch head coach, the Cougars have been plagued by minimal player turnout. This season, the issue still remains, yet Hale and the Cougars are adamant about their chances to improve on last season's struggles.
Since the start of Trans Valley League play, the Ripon High Indians have elevated their play.
Manteca showed no ill effects from a short week and its second loss of the season in Friday's 55-7 clobbering of Kimball at Don Nicholson Stadium in Tracy.
In nearly a decade at his post, Sierra head coach Jeff Harbison has rarely dipped into his lower-levels for talent.
Sierra hasn't had a losing record since 2005, Jeff Harbison's first year as the school's head football coach, and advanced to the Sac-Joaquin Section playoffs in five of the last six years.
It might be the best matchup no one's talking about, and that's OK with East Union coach Willie Herrera.
LATHROP – On Friday, there wasn't much that went right for the Lathrop football team and its daring quarterback, Diego Chavez
Ripon Christian was shut out in the second halves of its first two Southern League games - a closer-than-it-needed-to-be 21-20 win over Orestimba followed by a 15-14 heartbreaker at Le Grand.
SANTA CLARA – Luis Reyes saw a loose ball bouncing around and knew that he had to make a play.
Jacob Peterson scored two touchdowns for the Sierra freshmen in a 20-6 win over visiting Lathrop on Thursday in Valley Oak League action at Daniel Teicheira Memorial Stadium.
Lathrop held Sierra scoreless until the fourth quarter Friday in a 32-7 win over the Timberwolves in Valley Oak League sophomore action at Bennie Gatto Field.
RIPON - To Ripon, the 2014 season started for real on Friday night.
LATHROP – Statistically, it might have been Devin Nunez's worst performance under center for Sierra.
MODESTO – East Union, meet Justin Rice.
STOCKTON – A time-consuming drive late in the game Friday helped the Weston Ranch High Cougars slip past visiting Kimball, 18-14.
RIPON – Billy Marr engineered two scoring drives in the final three minutes as Ripon Christian completed a come-from-behind victory on Friday evening.