Two Touch­downs Enough For Var­sity Cougars

Escalon Times - - SPORTS - By MARG JACK­SON mjack­son@escalon­times.com

Get­ting a chance to play in front of their home­town fans, the Escalon var­sity football team made the most of it, hand­ing vis­it­ing Calav­eras a 14-6 set­back on Fri­day night at En­gel Field.

“It was more our style of football, we took a phys­i­cal ap­proach,” said head coach Mark Loureiro. “Both teams did a good job on de­fense and I was real proud of our de­fense, we forced three turnovers.”

C.J. Gumbs and Cameron Puthoff each had an in­ter­cep­tion; Trenton Busch had a fum­ble re­cov­ery. Lo­gan Widmer had a pair of sacks to lead the de­fense while Dustin Lawrence and Dakota Saing recorded seven tack­les each in a grinder of a game.

“We got more hel­mets around the ball,” added Loureiro. “The pace and speed was more our game.”

That, com­ing off a sea­son open­ing loss on the road at Pat­ter­son, where the Tigers used their speed to run away from the Cougars. This week, in a bat­tle of sim­i­larly matched teams, the host Cougars had the up­per hand.

“Calav­eras did score first, on their first drive of the game but they missed the ex­tra point,” Loureiro said of the Red­skins tak­ing the lead in the open­ing quar­ter.

Escalon fi­nally got the score they were look­ing for late in the sec­ond quar­ter, tak­ing the lead just be­fore half­time as the of­fense and de­fense started to set­tle in.

An 11-yard touch­down pass from Dy­lan Azevedo to Dustin Lawrence got the Cougars on the board and David Martinez added the point af­ter for a 7-6 Escalon lead.

“Then with about a minute and a half to go in the game, Hunter Cal­ton got in on a 10yard run,” ex­plained Loureiro. “That was on a seven-minute, 60-yard drive.”

Martinez added the point af­ter – barely – as the kick hit the cross­bar but bounced through. The Cougars had to kick off and made a nice de­fen­sive stand, al­low­ing the Red­skins lit­tle room to work with on their fi­nal drive.

“We were able to hold them out at the end,” said Loureiro. “That gave us more con­fi­dence.”

For the game, Escalon had 13 first downs and Calav­eras had nine, while the vis­it­ing Red­skins had the ad­van­tage in to­tal yards with 257 to Escalon’s 222.

The Red­skins had 32 rushes for 120 yards and had 137 yards pass­ing on seven-of-14, with two in­ter­cep­tions. They fum­bled once and lost it and were pe­nal­ized nine times for 60 yards.

Escalon had 42 rush­ing plays for 155 yards and Azevedo com­pleted eight-of-11 pass at­tempts with no in­ter­cep­tions. The Cougars had one fum­ble but held pos­ses­sion and they had just one penalty for 10 yards on the game.

“Of­fen­sively, Hunter Cal­ton had a good game, 18 car­ries for 101 yards and a touch­down,” noted Loureiro. “Chris Pilcher also ran hard for us, five car­ries for 31 yards and he did a great job block­ing. The of­fen­sive line did a very good job.”

Loureiro was also pleased with an over­all solid night from ju­nior quar­ter­back, Dy­lan Azevedo.

“He com­pleted eight of 11 pass at­tempts and three of them were for first downs,” Loureiro said, in ad­di­tion to the TD pass. “And Sam Lat­tig is turn­ing in to a solid re­ceiver for us; he had five catches for 38 yards, some big first downs to keep drives alive.”

There is still plenty of room for im­prove­ment, the coach said, but it was a solid show­ing from the Cougars in their home opener.

They get ready to travel this week, head­ing to An­gels Camp to face off with Bret Harte.

PREVIEW

On what is pre­dicted to be a triple digit day, Escalon will take on Bret Harte in An­gels Camp, play­ing on turf for the sec­ond time this pre­sea­son.

New head coach for the pur­ple and gold Bull­frogs is Casey Kester and the Bull­frogs play in the Mother Lode League. They took a 42-6 loss to Ores­timba in their last game.

“They’ll be chomp­ing at the bit to come back and get a win,” Loureiro said.

Lead­ing the Bull­frogs are quar­ter­back Mike Ziehlke, run­ning back Brady Westberg, re­ceivers Luke Pin­ney and Bucky Sewell and top line­man Colin Pre­ston.

Loureiro said it should be a good match up for the teams.

“This has been a good ri­valry for us over the years,” he said.

MARG JACK­SON/THE TIMES

As team­mate Lo­gan Widmer, 55, pro­vides the block, Cougar Hunter Cal­ton, 24, looks to turn the cor­ner and head up the field for a big gain on Fri­day. He had 18 car­ries for 101

yards and a touch­down in the var­sity vic­tory.

MARG JACK­SON/THE TIMES

Cougar quar­ter­back Dy­lan Azevedo, 6, is un­der cen­ter ready to take the snap as Hunter Cal­ton, 24, goes in mo­tion dur­ing ac­tion on Fri­day night on the home field against

Calav­eras. Escalon took a 14-6 win in the con­test.

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