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November 23, 2013

Friday Football Recap

Oak Ridge posted a section half shutout and Rio Linda rode another big game from Marcel Brown to advance to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II semi-finals. Also see how many yards Miles Harrison rushed for in Clayton Valley Charter's win.

Granite Bay knocked out Oak Ridge from the playoffs the past two years, but a second half shutout and timely throws from sophomore Ian Book helped the Trojans to a 28-17 second round win over the Grizzlies. They move on to face Pleasant Grove as the Delta River League swept all four Sac-Joaquin Section Division I spots.

"The Delta River League is no joke. It's almost sad to see it go away," Oak Ridge head coach Eric Cavaliere said. "That league has made us so much better as a football program. You win games like this game tonight because of what you have to do to be success in the league."

Down 17-14 at halftime, Book found Justin Priest for 41 yards to give Oak Ridge its first lead at 5:21 in the third quarter. The sophomore quarterback later added a furious rollout to the left and fired a perfect pass to the back left corner of the end zone to Victor Bunce to seal the game with less than six minutes left.

"I was just saying don't lose so many yards that we can't kick a field goal," Cavaliere said. "It is one of those things you can't coach. He keeps his eyes downfield. He sees what's going on downfield. He wants to throw the ball downfield. He has such an ability to extend plays."

The Grizzles gained the first half edge on two touchdown catches by Marc Ellis, who was returning from injury. Dominic Scotti booted home a 31 yard field goal to give Granite Bay a 17-14 lead, but it would be shutout the rest of the night.

Josh Wellman paced the Oak Ridge ground game with 107 yards and a touchdown while fullback Tanner Hughes had 29 yards and a one yard score. Granite Bay was held to just over two yards per carry, but got 261 passing yards from Josh Neal. He was intercepted twice by Bunce and once by Drew Lackowski. Douglas Benton

Rio Linda onto the semis

The Bulldogs eliminated Rio Linda in the first round of the playoffs in 2012. This season was a different story as the Knights posted a 31-21 win to advance to the SJS Division II semi-finals. Vacaville was without its leading rusher, David Mewborn, but still had plenty of other playmakers. Vacaville got the scoring started with a one yard run by Daniel Mewborn late in the first quarter. Rio Linda answered with a 19 yard run by Marcel Brown, his first of three scores, in the second quarter. Brown took it in from eight yards out right before half to put the halftime score at 17-7.

The Bulldogs stayed in the game with two unanswered scores to take a lead of 21-17 at the beginning of the fourth quarter. With four minutes left in the game, Brown carried the ball five consecutive plays totaling 73 yards. The last one from 24 yards put the Knights back ahead 24-21. Fullback Leonard Skattebo finished the scoring with a 35 yard run after a third fumble for Vacaville.

The Knights' strong running attack is led by a big mobile offensive line anchored by center Matthew Morris, who left the game in the third quarter with a sprained ankle. Fila Hingano came in and spelled him at center while also playing nose tackle on defense. Rio Linda head coach Michael Morris commented that Hingano played really well. Morris also had high praise for his defensive ends Danny Perez and Vaughn Hingano whom he says "is one of the best in town".

Next up for Rio Linda will be a date with Elk Grove, which defeated Burbank and will feature two of the area's best backs in Brown and Wadus Parker from Elk Grove. Michael Benton

Clayton Valley rolls along

Fans arrived at Clayton Valley Charter High School expecting to see a football game against Las Lomas. Instead, they were treated to the Miles Harrison show as the junior running back led the Ugly Eagles to a 59-13 win.

Harrison carried the ball 18 times for 320 yards and four touchdowns as the second-seeded Eagles won their 11th straight game and advanced to the North Coast Section Division II semifinals. The Knights began the game with the ball, but after they turned it over on downs, Harrison promptly sent the home crowd into a frenzy. After a six yard run on first down, Harrison broke loose for a 56 yard score on the Ugly Eagles' second play of the game.

Las Lomas responded with a touchdown of their own, but once again Harrison showed off his speed on a long touchdown run - this time he went for 60 yards. The Knights balanced offensive attack had some success early against the Ugly Eagles, but Las Lomas had trouble finishing drives as it turned the ball over on downs three times in the first half.

While the Knights struggled to finish drives, the Ugly Eagles found the end zone on each of their first six possessions. Clayton Valley - led by the outstanding effort from Harrison - was seemingly able to run the ball at will and that proved to be the difference in the one sided affair. The Ugly Eagles will host either Miramonte or Northgate on Friday, November 29, with a spot in the NCS Championship on the line. William Boor

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