Granite Bay overpowers Del Oro

Grizzlies score 50 unanswered points
By: Kurt Johnson, Press-Tribune sports editor
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With emotions running high out of the gate, things looked good for the Del Oro High School football team at Granite Bay on Friday night, but the early signs were deceiving. After falling behind early, the Grizzlies rebounded to dominate Del Oro 50-8 before a packed house. After the teams swapped punts on their opening possessions, the Golden Eagles caught a break when their kick bounced into an unsuspecting Granite Bay blocker and was recovered by Del Oro’s Josh Smith at the Granite Bay 34-yard-line. Del Oro took full advantage of the new life, covering the 34 yards in seven plays for the game’s initial points. Bryce Pratt took the ball over the top and beyond the goal line for the score. The Golden Eagles reached into the bag of tricks on the point after try, as kicker Mason Magleby taking a toss from his holder and raced in for a two-point conversion to give Del Oro an 8-0 lead. Granite Bay responded with an impressive 10 play, 68-yard touchdown march that culminated with a 17-yard scoring scamper by quarterback Teddy Bryant. A two-point conversion tied the contest at 8-8. On its next possession, the Golden Eagles went back to the bag of tricks, this time with horrific results. An attempted hitch and pitch play went awry when Spencer Butterfield’s pitch landed on the turf near the Del Oro 18-yard line. Grizzly linebacker Ryan Loder was in the right place at the right time, scooping up the free pigskin and carrying it to the end zone to put the Grizzlies in front for good. “After we answered their score and made the two-point try, we had a good feeling on our side,” Granite Bay coach Ernie Cooper said. “The turnover for a touchdown was big. We had talked about it coming in, in the last four meetings with Del Oro, the team that has scored a defensive touchdown has won the game.” “You can not turn the ball over against a good team,” said Del Oro head coach Casey Taylor. “Good teams will make you look bad.” It was all Grizzlies for the rest of the night as Granite Bay scored on its next five offensive possessions while dominating the line of scrimmage in running away from a very good Del Oro team. “The best thing for our team this week was to be facing Del Oro coming off a big win over a good team,” said Cooper. “We did not have to say anything to get them ready to play.” Granite Bay used a balanced attack to overwhelm the Golden Eagle defense in the first half, with Bryant passing for 144 yards, and passing for two touchdowns while rushing for one more. Bryant did all of his aerial damage in the first half, completing 10 of 17 passes, with scoring tosses of 37 yards to Austin Nash and 12 yards to Ian Rhodes. The Grizzlies turned to the power running game exclusively in the second half, varying their look with three different backs. Clark Partridge ran for 95 yards on the night, doing most of his work between the tackles. His 34-yard touchdown run near the end of the third quarter was his second TD of the night, and extended the Grizzly lead to 43-8. Brad Crisanty also delivered a 95-yard rushing night, with much of his total coming on Granite Bay’s final score, a 50-yard dash through the middle of the Del Oro defense. Justin Sutter picked some key Granite Bay yards, running for 43 yards on the night. Most impressive was the Granite Bay defense, which shut down both the passing game of Mason Magleby and the running of Bryce Pratt, who carried 19 times for 57 yards. 19 of those yards came on a meaningless run at the end of the first half with the Grizzlies in a prevent defense mode. “They clearly are as good as advertised,” said Taylor. “Once they got going, we could not stop them. They have a great secondary and they dominated the line of scrimmage.” “It helped us a lot that cornerback Corey Vanderbeek was able to shut down Butterfield,” Cooper said. “Our defensive coaches did a great job mixing things up and we played great team defense.” Loder and Ryan Bertrand were everywhere for the Grizzlies defense, as Granite Bay won its Sierra Foothill League opener and moved to 6-0 overall. The loss dropped Del Oro to 0-1 in the SFL, and 2-4 overall. Junior Varsity Results In the junior varsity contest, the Golden Eagles missed a field goal with 6:38 to play and then watched Granite Bay drive the length of the field for a Corey Brehm touchdown to take a 14-7 lead with 2:20 to play in the game. Del Oro responded with a long march of its own, but fumbled the ball away at the one-yard line to leave the Grizzlies with a14-7 victory.