Fifth-seeded Manteca used a dominating performance by both sides of its line to limit the high-octane Burbank offense to one touchdown, while running back Trabron Russell eclipsed 200 yards and scored three times on the way to a 36-6 win in opening-round action of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs at Guss Schmiedt Field.
“We have been challenging our line for the last couple of weeks,” Manteca coach Mark Varnum said. “They really took it personal and got after it tonight.
“Coach (Dan) Eavenson has been doing a great job — he has done a great job for a long time — and they dominated up front. I told them if we want to get to where we want to get it’s up to our line. It’s Manteca, that’s what we do.”
One of those linemen who helped the Buffaloes (8-3) dominate was Chandler Snyder, a two-way starting tackle.
“We were told that we were going to have to win it up front, that it was up to the linemen this week,” Snyder said. “We worked hard this week in practice, we studied film, put in extra hours.
“We did our thing, we came out here and we dominated. Trabron Russell ran through the holes and our fullback Chris Ortiz popped a couple.”
Russell (20 carries, 233 yards) scored on runs of 3, 8 and 69 yards in the first half. Those touchdowns capped scoring drives of six plays, 54 yards; six plays, 97 yards and 14 plays, 84 yards on Manteca’s first three drives.
“It starts up front,” Russell said. “They really executed and that translated over to me.
“If they give me a little I will take a lot.”
With 5:32 left in the first quarter it appeared as if No. 12 Burbank (6-5) was on its way to tying the game having reeled off 59 yards in 11 plays down to the Manteca 3-yard line when the Buffaloes’ Isaac Searcy recovered a fumble to end the threat.
Manteca kept Burbank away from the goal line until the last play of the third quarter when Titans standout Levelle Bailey (12 of 21 passing, 166 yards; 11 carries, 71 yards) scored on a 3-yard run.
Bailey was responsible for all but 17 of the Titans’ yards, but he got more than one-third of his yards on two plays — a 46-yard carry up the middle on a broken play and a 42-yard pass completion.
For the second week in a row, Marc Buenrostro was a menace in the opposition backfield, netting two sacks and two tackles for a loss. Also contributing for the Manteca defense were Tyler Brintley, Evans Nicolas and Jose Ceja.
“Last week we had a little struggle getting the push on the line,” Buenrostro said. “This week our preparation was getting that push to go against the best of the best.
“Getting to that second season, the playoffs, you go against some better teams. We prepare better than the game, our practices are better than the game.”
Ortiz (nine carries, 70 yards) scored on a 14-yard run early in the fourth period and Miguel Sequeira capped the night’s scoring for the Buffaloes with a 2-yard plunge with 2:01 left in the game.
Ryan Ward directed Manteca’s offense, completing 5 of 8 passes for 78 yards.
The Buffaloes, having run their SJS playoff game-best winning streak to eight games, travel north to take on No. 4 Antelope next Friday at 7 p.m.
Burbank 0 0 6 0 — 6
Manteca 14 6 0 16—36
M—Trabron Russell 3 run (kick failed), 9:05.
M—Russell 69 run (Jacob DeJesus from Ryan Ward), 3:21.
M—Russell 8 run, (kick failed), 6:53.
B—Levelle Bailey 2 run (pass failed), 0:03.
M—Chris Ortiz 14 run (Russell run), 11:00.
M—Miguel Sequeira 2 run (Jorge Cedano from Ward), 2:01.