By HEATHER CAMPBELL-O’BRIEN
OAKDALE — The Sierra Timberwolves went touchdown for touchdown against Oakdale in the first quarter but could not keep the same momentum going for the rest of the game, losing at The Corral 38-14 Friday night during Valley Oak League play.
“I mean, you can’t replicate a team like Oakdale,” Sierra coach Chris Johnson said. “As efficient as they are offensively and defensively, they just really shut us down well tonight.
“But you can’t turn the ball over five times against anybody, it doesn’t matter who you are playing. You turn the ball over five times, you get the penalties that we had again, and you are going to lose. Especially against a great football team like that.”
Rylan Kerr capped Oakdale’s first scoring drive — a five-play, 63-yard masterpiece — with a 1-yard scoring plunge on the Mustangs’ second possession for a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter.
The Timberwolves (1-2 VOL, 5-2 overall) quickly answered back with an 83-yard touchdown run straight up the middle by Kimoni Stanley.
“Of course you want the ball in the hands of No. 5 (Stanley), but when you have a guy and he’s got to play offense and he’s got to play defense, he can’t carry the ball 30 times a game, because he won’t make it through the year,” Johnson said.
Sierra trailed just 14-7 at halftime, but the Mustangs (3-1, 5-3) put up 24 second-half points to pull away.
“I think at halftime, we felt like we were right there,” Johnson said “We felt like we were playing with them.
“You know, hats off to them and their D line, they did some great stuff that we just couldn’t adjust to and they beat us.”
Trailing 24-7, Stanley scored the second touchdown for Sierra on a 4-yard run early in the fourth quarter. He finished 164 yards on 14 carries. Teammate Shane Johnson chipped in 76 yards on 10 carries.
“I thought that it was a good football game,” Mustang Coach Trent Merzon said. “It was a typical Valley Oak League football game between two good football teams and I thought that we just kinda finally were able to make the play when we needed to. They made a mistake, we capitalized, and our physicality took over from there. I think the last quarter and a half we were the more physical football team.
“I told the kids to make sure everyone knows you love playing the game and then make sure we are the toughest team on the field. Rather than the scoreboard, those are the two things we were trying to worry about and I thought we looked like we loved the game today. I thought we were the tougher team.”
Christian Threadgill was in on eight tackles for the Timberwolves with support from Aydan Horn and Javier Morales.
Sierra travels across town to play East Union at Dino Cuniel field next Friday night.
Sierra 7 0 0 7 — 14
Oakdale 7 7 7 17 — 38
O—Rylan Kerr 1 run (Dom McDonald kick), 5:29
S—Kimoni Stanley 83 run (Jordan Shinn kick), 2:35
O—Peyton Bradford 8 pass from Jackson Holt (McDonald kick), 00:23
O—Zeke Saffar 21 run (McDonald kick), 10:29
O—McDonald 32 field goal 9:43
S—Stanley 4 run (Shinn kick), 8:12
O—Saffar 73 run (McDonald kick), 7:50
O—Saffar 13 run (McDonald kick), 2:32