Clean Sweep Of Sonora For JV, Fresh­man Foot­ball

The Oakdale Leader - - SPORTS - By DEN­NIS D. CRUZ dcruz@oak­dale­leader.com

Zero week for the Oak­dale foot­ball pro­gram was a pro­duc­tive one. The fresh­man and ju­nior var­sity teams were in ac­tion against Sonora this past week and it was Oak­dale gal­lop­ing away from the Wild­cats in both af­fairs.

On Thurs­day night the fresh­men suited up in front of the home crowd and was very im­pres­sive in the team’s de­but. Oak­dale posted 41 unan­swered points to take a com­mand­ing 41-0 half­time lead and won the game 48-12. Led by run­ning back Zeke Saf­far’s 271 rush­ing yards and five touch­downs (all in the first half) Oak­dale si­lenced the Wild­cats.

“My of­fen­sive line did all of the work, hon­estly they opened things up for me and oth­ers tonight,” Saf­far said.

Also scor­ing for the Ponies were Dono­van Walker and Johnathon Jones. Help­ing out on the O-line were Kyle Red­ding, Seth Pre­sant, Owen Pena, Robert Silva and Geno Sar­ale.

“We were ex­cited. This jour­ney started back in June. We wanted to work on im­prov­ing from our scrim­mage and I think we did do that tonight,” sec­ond year head coach Rod Long said of the team’s ef­forts “Now, can we be bet­ter than what we did tonight? Yes ab­so­lutely. I will watch the film and go from there.”

Oak­dale trav­els to Merced to take on El Cap­i­tan on Thurs­day night. Kick­off is sched­uled for 4 p.m.

For the ju­nior var­sity squad, a road trip up the hill was worth it. Oak­dale shut out Sonora 16-0 to open up the sea­son on a pos­i­tive note. Although scor­ing was lim­ited, the team’s de­fense was fierce on Fri­day night. Trevor Smith sealed the fate of Sonora in the fourth quar­ter on an in­ter­cep­tion that held off a po­ten­tial rally for the Wild­cats. On the of­fen­sive side it was full­back Cole Niemi that scored first, on a 13-yard rush mid­way through the first quar­ter. Oak­dale took a 10-0 lead into the half as quar­ter­back and kicker Do­minic McDon­ald con­nected on a 26-yard field goal at the end of the sec­ond quar­ter. McDon­ald also scored on a seven-yard run with 7:11 left in the third quar­ter to make it 16-0.

“We were ex­cited about the po­ten­tial to come up here and win. The ju­nior var­sity team has not won up here in a while and tonight we were ex­cited to put a stop to that,” McDon­ald said. “It was a great team ef­fort and it turned into a win.”

Oak­dale re­turns home and will play Fri­day night against El Cap­i­tana with kick­off sched­uled for 5 p.m.

DEN­NIS D. CRUZ/ THE LEADER

De­liv­er­ing a stiff arm to the Sonora de­fender was ju­nior var­sity run­ning back Leo Ayala, as the JV boys nailed down a big Fri­day night road win at Sonora.

DEN­NIS D. CRUZ/THE LEADER

Prior to kick­off on Thurs­day, the Oak­dale fresh­man cap­tains walked to mid­field for the coin toss. Cap­tains are Robert Silva (54), Ry­lan Kerr (2), Zeke Saf­far (25) and Caden Frazee (13).

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