If you're going to play with a chip on your shoulder, it might as well be boulder.
The 2009 season marked the end of Sierra and Patterson's annual non-league meeting.
RIPON – It was the first Sac-Joaquin Section appearance in school history for Venture Academy. Unfortunately Ripon High is on a quest to reach the Division-IV final for the fifth consecutive season, and the difference was obvious in a 25-5, 25-5, 25-10 first-round Indians win Tuesday.
The close to the Valley Oak League season played a major role in the formation of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division-III Football Championships bracket, but nothing could alter the extended seasons for Manteca, East Union and Sierra high's football programs once the brackets were revealed Saturday evening.
Manteca High had little trouble coming back from a close loss to the Oakdale Mustangs, taking care of business in the Valley Oak League finale with a convincing win over the East Union Lancers Friday.
MANTECA – Although Manteca freshman football coach Jon Shaefer was concentrating on his team's 40-8 win over visiting East Union on Thursday in the Valley Oak League finale, he couldn't help but look over the Lancers' bleachers to the east at Guss Schmiedt Field and wonder what was happening up the hill at Dunlavy Field where Oakdale was visiting Sonora.
Manteca High and East Union were locked in a classic battle Friday at Dino Cunial Field.
NEWMAN - Almost everything went right for Ripon High in the first half Friday against Orestimba in a game that both teams needed for a Sac-Joaquin Section Division IV playoff berth.
WESTON RANCH - The Sierra Timberwolves had one opportunity to close out their season with a win and continue into the Sac-Joaquin Section postseason, and they didn't forfeit the chance, jumping out to a seven-touchdown first half lead on their way to a 53-6 win Friday over Weston Ranch.
RIPON – The Knights closed out the season in spectacular fashion Friday at Stouffer Field.
TRACY – Lathrop came out in the third quarter and got two scores via the no-huddle offense and take a one-point lead, but an 80-yard scoring run by Kimball's Zack Johnson put the Jaguars ahead to stay in the 26-21 Valley Oak League win for Kimball at Don Nicholson Stadium.
Fourteen Sac-Joaquin Section playoff tickets have already been punched.
It's been a long time since the East Union-Manteca game, the oldest rivalry in the area, has meant something for all parties involved.
For Sierra it's for the right to continue its season.
Things were looking bleak for Ripon High's football team a month ago.
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.
Jeff Harbison put his full trust in his players.
Let's play a word association game, shall we? When I say "Sierra High football," what adjectives and superlatives spring to mind?
It doesn't work just to pressure Jack Weaver.
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.