Another dose of disappointment for Sierra College

By: Cecil Conley, Sports Editor
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Sierra College has gone from winning the Valley Conference football championship three years in a row to not winning a conference game three weeks in a row. The Wolverines swallowed another dose of disappointment Saturday. San Joaquin Delta proved its 2-0 conference record was no fluke by making it 3-0 with a 48-14 victory in Rocklin. Sierra is 0-3 in the conference and 3-5 overall. There is no talk of titles these days with the Wolverines. “I think we’re all disappointed that we didn’t play well,” said Sierra head coach Jeff Tisdel, who is not accustomed to making such remarks because he is not accustomed to losing so often. Last year’s 5-6 finish was Tisdel’s first losing season in 10 years at Sierra. The Wolverines need a victory at Modesto next week or against Sequoias in their Nov. 13 season finale at home to avoid a second. The odds are against Sierra as long as the offense continues to sputter with a revolving door at quarterback. Sam Martinez started Saturday and was replaced late in the first quarter by Tanner Mathias. “We had no synch on offense,” Tisdel said. Martinez returned in the third quarter only to eventually be replaced again by Mathias, who threw two touchdown passes but also had two interceptions returned for touchdowns. Sierra’s defense did not need the offense giving away points. It was already doing a fine job of that. “We had about 70 missed tackles, or something like that,” Tisdel lamented. Sierra led 7-3 early in the second quarter after Mathias tossed a 26-yard scoring pass to tight end Michael Gray. Mathias gave back the six points when he threw an interception that Marc Porras returned 32 yards for a touchdown to give Delta a 17-7 halftime lead. The Mustangs then received the second-half kickoff and drove 71 yards in nine plays to take a 17-point lead. Fredrick jones capped the drive with a 3-yard scoring run. Mathias answered on Sierra’s ensuing possession when he avoided a sack and found Devin Hartley for a 44-yard touchdown pass. Hartley has become the go-to receiver with Taylor Schablaske recovering from a concussion.