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Curtice, Indians pound Bret Harte for road victory
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ANGELS CAMP — When it was all said and done, the Ripon Indians were able to use the tenacious face of adversity as momentum in their 26-14 win over Bret Harte in a non-league road victory.

The Ripon High student body was forced to deal with an untimely death of one of their classmates this week, yet the football team was able to come out and play a focused first half, jumping out to a comfortable 14-0 lead after two quarters of action.

“I was real pleased with our team,” Ripon head coach Chris Johnson said. “It has been a rough week at Ripon High School, so it has been real hard for our kids, but they responded really well.

“They came out ready to play and were focused on the game.”

Ripon (3-1) rolled to victory behind a bruising rushing attack that Bret Harte simply had no answer for. The Indians racked up nearly 300 yards on the ground, doing a job on the Bullfrogs’ front line as well as on the game clock.

Alex Gustin and Nick Curtice both scored on second-quarter touchdown runs, giving the Indians all the breathing room they would need. Bret Harte was able to push across a late fourth-quarter score, yet the Indians third victory of the season was already secure.

“They came out in that second half and played real hard,” Johnson said. “They scored right away and then we muffed that punt snap and they were ready to score again.

“Then we got an interception and that’s really what took the wind out of their sails.”

Curtice added a third quarter score and receiver Jared Macedo hauled in a 42-yard pass from Gustin to padding Ripon’s lead and usher the Indians back on the right track. Curtice had a phenomenal effort (26 carries, 183 yards, two TD) and Ripon will need that same sort of explosiveness next week when they play host to the Calaveras Redskins.

“I think our kids will be focused,” Johnson said. “I think we’ll be focused and have a great week of practice and be ready for a great high school football team.”
— Jagada Chambers