Del Oro hammers Woodcreek in SFL openerBy: Bill Poindexter/Roseville Press Tribune Sports Editor
LOOMIS — A bumpy first half of the high school football season is now behind Del Oro, and with Friday night’s 38-7 pasting of Woodcreek in a Sierra Foothill League opener, it’s obvious the Golden Eagles’ 1-4 start had more to do with a schedule that included two nationally ranked Southern California powers and two of Sacramento’s most reputable programs than with Del Oro being — well, down.
The Golden Eagles (2-4 overall, 1-0 SFL) pounced on the Timberwolves’ mistakes in taking a 17-0 lead after one quarter and then gradually went for the throat.
“We had some really close games,” Del Oro head coach Casey Taylor said following a homecoming victory that featured the band marching to its halftime show with no stadium lights and lit up themselves from head to toe. “We told the kids to believe in the process, and we hit the reset button. It’s about winning our league.”
Whether the Golden Eagles win the SFL again is up for debate, but they’re sure to have a say-so in the matter. In addition to scoring a season-high 38 points, Del Oro held high-powered Woodcreek (2-4, 0-1) to 275 total yards, intercepted Stephen Nogosek two times, one of which was a 35-yard return for a touchdown by junior Dylan Kainrath on the final play of the first quarter, limited powerful junior running back Mitchell Layton to 54 yards rushing and kept the Timberwolves out of the end zone until the fourth quarter.
Offensively, Del Oro was four parts blue collar, one part flash and dash. The Golden Eagles rushed for 107 yards in the first half and 110 in the second half.
Senior quarterback Zach Labar was 12 for 15 passing for 185 yards, including touchdowns of five and three yards to junior Tyler Meteer. Senior Mark Leveron rushed for 112 yards in 12 carries, including a 68-yard touchdown run that typified Woodcreek’s struggles.
Leveron’s big run came on third and 30 late in the first quarter. Del Oro also had a 70-yard screen pass for a touchdown — on second and 20 — from Labar to Kainrath nullified because of a penalty. Labar also had a 58-yard completion.
“We made some mental mistakes, but at halftime, we figured it all out and came out charging,” Kainrath said.
Woodcreek, meanwhile, contributed to its opponent’s victory for the second week in a row. In addition to three interceptions total, the Timberwolves also lost a fumble.
Woodcreek’s first possession ended with a punt after Layton’s 19-yard run was nullified because of a holding penalty. Layton punted from the back of his end zone, and Del Oro drew first blood on Skyler Rand’s 24-yard field goal midway through the first period.
Del Oro scored twice in the final 1:24 of the first quarter as a result of Woodcreek interceptions, the first of which was tipped by Therin Heryford and picked by Cody Otten. Dalton Hudec intercepted Dylan Stacy in the end zone on a gadget play on fourth and one from the 2-yard line late in the third period.
Woodcreek 34, Del Oro 26 — Matt Ahnin recovered two late onside kicks to help the Timberwolves (3-2, 1-0) hold off the Golden Eagles (2-3, 0-1).
Quarterback Isaiah Harborth threw long two touchdown passes to Malcolm Thomas, both deep fade routes, and ran for a score for Woodcreek.
Lenny Nelson and Donn Corbin each had a scoring run for the Timberwolves, whose offensive and defensive lines dominated all night.
DEL ORO 38, WOODCREEK 7
Del Oro 17 0 7 14 — 38
Woodcreek 0 0 0 7 — 7
DO — FG Rand 24
DO — Leveron 68 run (Rand kick)
DO — Kainrath 35 interception return (Rand kick)
DO — Meteer 5 pass from Labar (Rand kick)
DO — Meteer 3 pass from Labar (Rand kick)
Wood — Layton 11 run (Nogosek kick)
DO — Small 3 run (Rand kick)
RUSHING — Woodcreek, Layton 16-54, Nogosek 4-54, Fernandez 4-6, Shurtz 3-17, Stacy 1-minus 1. Del Oro, Kainrath 18-55, Leveron 12-112, Peterson 3-34, Tuttle 2-11, Small 2-5.
PASSING — Woodcreek, Nogosek 14-28-2, 145; Stacy 0-1-1, 0. Del Oro, Labar 12-15-0, 185; Moore 0-1-0, 0.
RECEIVING — Woodcreek, Robinson 5-72, York 3-21, Layton 2-12, Harbison 1-19, Stacy 1-11, Rotteveel 1-8, Daw 1-2. Del Oro, Meteer 7-42, Becker 4-82, Kainrath 1-61.