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1974: Swift sets pace as Lancers end 7 years of frustration
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Forty years ago, on November 17, 1974, seven years of frustration for East Union High came to a crunching end as the undefeated Lancers pounded out a 30-13 victory over a game, but outmanned, Manteca High football team. It was the tenth straight win of 1974 for Coach Vern Gebhardt’s Union Roaders. Fullback Doug Swift rolled up 156 yards and three touchdowns to pace the victors. His efforts gave him 1,013 yards for the season. EU’s Ron Hamamoto passed to Mark Trout for the first Lancer score and a few moments later, the junior quarterback ran another in from nine yards out. With six minutes remaining in the game, Bill Ruble, the senior two-way performer for the Buffaloes, intercepted a Don Lay pass and ran 60 yards to get MHS on the scoreboard. Brett Chamberlain kicked the extra point. Jeff Williams later slipped over guard for a six-yard TD run and the final Buff score. East Union’s defense, led by Steve Corbett, Mario Silveira and Jennings Wilson, held Manteca High to just 42 yards rushing.

In other sports stories from the Bulletin files:

70 years ago: November 23, 1944 – Manteca High rambled over the Ceres High eleven for a 26-7 win on the local field last Friday night. Buffalo touchdowns were scored by Ken Mullins, Pete Kaloutsis, Bill Kotoff and Ernie Bobson. The game ended with the Buffs on the Ceres one- yard line.

60 years ago: November 25, 1954 – Four Manteca High football players landed on the Valley Oak League all-star team, named last week following a poll of coaches in the league. First-team honors went to Don Breitenbucher, left end; Ken Hall, left tackle; Bud Mayfield, right guard; and Dave Lawton, running back.

50 years ago: November 23, 1964 – In one of the most one-sided 13-0 games ever seen on the local gridiron, Manteca High wrote a happy finish to the 1964 grid season here Friday night by downing their arch-rivals, the Tracy High Bulldogs. Coach Phil Harmon’s Buffaloes dominated the action throughout, but fumbles, interceptions, and key penalties made the final score much closer than the game actually seemed to the near-capacity crowd that sat in on the action. Quarterback Tom Nascimento scored on a nine-yard keeper early in the second half and halfback Bill Mendosa clichéd the win with a two-yard blast. Don Widmer kicked the extra point.

30 years ago: November 20, 1984 – East Union High opened its 1984-85 girls’ soccer season Tuesday with a 4-0 loss at the hands of Turlock High on the Bulldog field. First-year EU coach Pedro Chavez noted the play of fullbacks Amy Egellum and Mel Gunderson, who played aggressive and solid games.

The Manteca High girls’ basketball team, just off a lop-sided defeat, took its frustrations out on an overwhelmed Los Banos High squad Tuesday night at Winter Gym, breezing to a 66-16 non-league victory. Four Lady Buffs finished the night in double figures. Guard Cheri Nepote tallied 13 points, while Joette Lucas pumped in 12 and Michelle Gale had 11. Lisa Womack also had good night with 10 points. Gale also had 10 rebounds.

Meanwhile across town, Tracy High went on a second-half tear to hand East Union High and new basketball coach Jim Waterman a 50-38 setback. Julie Davis, EU’s junior forward, led the local girls with nine points and 10 rebounds.

Wednesday night, 350 fans witnessed an impressive defensive show from East Union High, as the Lancers opened the 1984-85 boys’ season with a 59-29 win over visiting Tokay High of Lodi at Dalben Center. EU limited the Tigers to just 11 points in the second half, and no field goals in the final quarter. Mark Waterman led the Lancers with 14 points. Harold Breckenridge followed with 10 points.

Manteca High’s boys’ basketball team opened the hoop season Friday night by fighting back from an 11-point first-half deficit and holding off host Beyer High down the stretch before capturing a heart-stopping 84-79 victory. Senior guard John Aguilar led all scorers with 25 points. Forward Pete Nelson, battling foul trouble through most of the game, pumped in 18 points and hauled down 13 rebounds. Anthony Salgado added 11 points for the Buffaloes.

20 years ago: November 21, 1994 – The East Union High girls’ basketball team bounced back from a season-opening loss with a 49-38 win over Merced High on Tuesday. Lady Lancer Maila Baltazar finished with 18 points to lead all scorers and Jessie Hardcastle added 11 points to the total.

Manteca High junior Bryan Lucas poured in 30 points and came away with 14 rebounds and 6-5 senior center Mike Prokop, the only returning starter on the team, added another 14 rebounds to lead the Buffaloes to a 71-60 victory over Tracy High in the basketball season opener Monday night in Winter Gym. Erik Alves added 10 points to the winning total.

The East Union High girls’ soccer team came from behind with two second-half goals to beat Turlock High 2-1 in their soccer opener Monday. Lyndi Saxton and Meghan Harris scored the Lady Lancer goals for Coach Lance Morrow’s girls.

East Union High celebrated VOL championships in freshman football and junior varsity boys soccer, a second-place finish in volleyball and four state qualifiers in cross-country at the annual fall sports banquet on Monday. Micah McDaniel was named the most dedicated player and the team captain for soccer; Daniel Gohlke was the outstanding runner on the boys’ cross-country team (he also carries a 4.0 grade point average); freshman Dawn Sellers was named the top newcomer on the girls team; instead of naming a most valuable player for tennis, Coach Bill Stricker named three most improveds. Kristi Lewis, Courtney Vallesteros and Nicole Zacharias all won the honor.

The Manteca High girls’ basketball team overcame a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter to nip Tokay High 46-43 Tuesday in their season opener. Lady Buff Anna Jackson finished as the game’s leading scorer with 21 points. She also had eight rebounds and six steals.

A career-high 36-point performance by David Asuncion and stellar team defense and quickness carried East Union High to a 72-64 basketball season-opening triumph over Johansen High of Modesto on Wednesday night at Dalben Center. The only other Lancer in double figures was Shane Lewis with 14 points.

10 years ago: November 25, 2004 – Jeff Becker and Michael Elder caught fire for Sierra High’s basketball team in the third quarter Wednesday night with Becker exploding for 10 of his game-high 26 points and Elder grabbing five of his 14 rebounds to lead the Timberwolves to a 63-52 come-from-behind win over host Ceres High.

Despite 25 turnovers, the junior-laden East Union High basketball team opened its season with a 59-52 win over visiting Bear Creek High at Dalben Center Tuesday night. “If you’re going to commit that many turnovers, you’re not supposed to win,” said a hoarse-voiced Coach Eric Simoni. Landon Marty, the Lancers’ only returning starter from the 2003 VOL co-championship team, led the way with 18 points and eight boards.

East Union High’s Lady Lancers, behind a solid defensive effort and patience on offense, took down host Bear Creek High 45-31 to open its 2004 basketball campaign triumphantly. Jazz Herrera, EU’s top returning player, was double and triple-teamed most of the game, but churned out 11 rebounds to go with her six points. Anjelica Dill-James finished with 17 points and 11 more rebounds for the Lady Lancers.

It took all of eight minutes and 20 feet for the game to spiral out of control for Johansen High Tuesday against Sierra High’s girls’ cage team. The T’wolves connected on eight 3-pointers en route to a 63-32 win. Coach Dan Cunial’s defending VOL champions deployed their same vaunted full-court pressure that created 34 Lady Viking turnovers. Marylynn Bracamontes paced Sierra with five steals. Andrea Rodriguez scored 18 of her game-high 20 points in the first quarter, helped by four 3-pointers. Jeannette Clay, a 5-10 center, collected 10 rebounds to go with 12 points for the T’wolf girls.

Tyler Rice and Adrian Gallardo were named the co-MVP’s on Manteca High’s soccer team at the Fall Sports Awards ceremony recently.

Manteca High’s football team didn’t even flinch in the opening round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs Friday at Colfax High. With 36 seconds left in the game, it came down to place kicker Anthony King, who was hobbled by an MCL tear in a knee. King calmly nailed a 27-yard field goal to give the underdog Buffaloes an 18-17 lead and the eventual game-winner. Standout cornerback Michael Turner intercepted a pass and returned it for a 35 yard touchdown for the first Buff score. The ensuing PAT turned into two points as holder Steven Alvarez strolled into the end zone. Late in the third quarter, quarterback Sammy Miller hit Akeem Wade for a touchdown and Williams’ PAT made it 17-15. Manteca faces Rio Linda High next Friday in the Section semi-finals.