LATHROP — The Lathrop High Spartans had their moments Friday against Pacheco.
But the Panthers had more firepower in spoiling homecoming at Bennie Gatto Field, decisively winning the Western Athletic Conference affair, 49-12.
"That's a very good football team," said Lathrop coach Joe Pirillo, who was well aware of the Panthers' explosive offense.
They amassed 339 total yards — 182 rushing and 157 passing. Running back Julian Moran led the way with a game-high 119 yards on eight carries and two touchdowns.
"Pacheco is very disciplined on offense," Pirillo added.
Lathrop (1-1 WAC, 1-4 overall) did have highlights of its own. Senior wide receiver Maurice Saulsbury and quarterback Justin Manuel hooked up on 65- and 74- yard touchdown passes in the first half.
Pacheco (2-0, 4-1), however, came out guns a blazing. On that very first play from scrimmage, Moran went up the middle, racing 65 yards to pay dirt.
The Spartans answered back as Saulsbury turned a short pass from Manuel into a 65-yard score. The Panthers still led 7-6 following Lathrop's missed conversion.
Pacheco needed just three plays — kick returner Jerry Winters gave his team good field position while quarterback Marcus Ordunez scampered 25 yards, making it 14-6.
The Panthers scored again early in the second quarter when receiver Chris Medrano turned a pass from Ordunez into a 45-yard touchown.
After the Saulsbury-Manuel connection closed the deficit to 21-12, Pacheco pulled away in the second half by scoring three times in the third quarter.
Ronnie Garcia plowed in to the end zone on a 4-yard run, Moran slithered his way past the Lathrop defense for a 15-yard TD, and Winters hauled in a 54-yard scoring strike from Ordunez, who completed 6 of his 12 passes.
Sebastian Iniguez led the Spartans, picking up 65 yards on 19 carries,
Saulsbury caught four passes for 135 yards.
On defense, Jordan Denning and Iniguez both had big sacks.
"We need re-group," said Pirillo following the lopsided setback. "The tough part of our schedule is behind us.”
Lathrop travels to Modesto next Friday to face Beyer.
Pacheco 14 14 21 0 — 49
Lathrop 6 6 0 0 — 12
P—Julian Moran 48 run (Alfonso Giron kick), 10:51.
L—Maurice Saulsbury 65 pass from Justin Manuel (kick failed), 8:38.
P—Marcus Ordunez 25 run (Agustin Lino kick), 7:39.
P—Chris Medrano 45 pass from Ordunez (Lino kick), 9:03.
L—Saulsbury 74 pass from Manuel (pass failed), 7:38.
P—Ordunez 42 run (Giron kick), 7:28.
P—Ronnie Garcia 4 run (Giron kick), 8:54.
P—Moran 15 run (Giron kick), 3:36.
P—Jerry Winters 54 pass from Ordunez (Giron kick), 0:21.