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Turnovers costly for EU in loss to Raiders
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MODESTO — East Union went toe to toe with Valley Oak League-leading Central Catholic at David Patton Field, but turnovers doomed the Lancers in a 41-0 loss Friday.
The Raiders (6-0 VOL, 7-2 overall) forced four turnovers and scored off three of them, including a 60-yard fumble return for a touchdown by Luke Navarro midway through the third quarter. It was a 14-0 game at halftime, but Central Catholic used a 21-point outburst in the third to run away with it.
“If we execute and take care of the football we can play with anybody, and we proved that in the first half of this game,” East Union assistant coach Jason Stock said. “We’re really happy with how we came out and fought in the first half. We made a couple mistakes in the second half here and there, and they’re too good of a football team to give second chances.
“Our defense played their butt off, but as an offense we didn’t give them a lot of help.”
Jared Rice led the Raiders with 179 yards rushing and three touchdowns. His 32-yard scamper gave them an early 7-0 lead with about nine minutes to go in the first quarter. He hit paydirt again late in the second quarter with a 12-yard run. The scoring drive was set up by an East Union fumble.
Jake Harries kept the Lancers (3-3, 6-3) within striking distance early on with an interception in the end zone.
East Union garnered momentum at the start of the second half as Jack Weaver recovered his own onside kick on the Central Catholic 49, but it was short-lived. On the next play, Weaver had a pass deflected by one of his receivers and picked off by Central’s Joshua Hamilton. The Raiders increased their lead to 21-0 on Montell Bland’s 11-yard run about a minute later and the rout was on.
Rice tallied his final touchdown late in the third with a 60-yard jaunt, and Joshua Hamilton added a 50-yard run in the fourth to cap the final score.
“We played a heck of a game and our kids fought, it just was not the outcome we wanted,” Stock said. “Tough team effort, for the most part.”