The Yosemite High Badgers (1-6, 0-2) faced another brutal road game Oct. 18 against the Lions of Kerman (6-1, 2-0), along with the largest and loudest opponent crowd this season, with the Lions dismantling the Badgers 56-12 on its homecoming night.
It was Kerman's third straight win. Coach JD Burnett's squad is a legitimate contender to win the North Sequoia League.
Mistakes continue to plague the Badgers. Three Badger turnovers resulted in a quick 21-0 Lion lead. Kerman amassed 361 yards in a balanced air and run attack with Badger turnovers often giving Kerman great field position.
Sophomore Jason Lee had a career night accounting for 220 all-purpose yards, leading the team in rushing and receiving yards.
Three first quarter turnovers costly for Badgers
Yosemite's Cody Elam fumbled on the game's opening kickoff, giving the Lions the ball on the Badger 18. On the next play Basilio Gutierrez ran for an 18-yard touchdown.
Yosemite's next possession started at the Badger 33. With Lee's running and receiving, YHS drove to the Kerman 22. Fullback Bobby Magee fumbled at the 22 and Kerman linebacker Issac Gonzalez picked up the fumble and rambled all the way to the Badger 28. Running back Andrew Flores bolted 28 yards on the next play for the score.
On Yosemite's next possession quarterback Joey Woolsey fumbled the ball as he dropped back to pass. Kerman took over at the YHS 42. It wasn't long before Lion quarterback Evan Sagariballa hit fullback Ryan Wright in left flat for a 14-yard TD. Sagariballa managed 214 yards passing on the night on just seven completions.
Three Badger turnovers in less than seven minutes resulted in 21 unanswered points, despite the Badger offense outgaining the Lions.
Starting at the Yosemite 31, Woolsey and the Badgers put together an 11-play, 69-yard touchdown drive with Lee scoring on a six-yard pass reception. It was one of the best drives of the season, but unfortunately it was the Badger's only scoring drive of the night. The first quarter ended with Kerman up 21-6.
Like other opponents this season, the Kerman put the game away in the second quarter, scoring on its first possession of the quarter on a 24-yard touchdown pass from Sagariballa to Jorge Godinez.
After a short Kerman kick-off, the Badger kick return team could not come up with the ball and Kerman recovered at the Badger 35. After a pass completion to the nine, Mory Saadati took it in for a touchdown. The Lions would score again to take a 47-6 halftime lead.
Maybe the best highlight of the night for YHS occurred late in the third quarter when Leo Meza, fielded another short kickoff and bolted by Kerman tacklers on his way to a 62-yard kickoff return. Due to Badger injuries, Meza a converted running back, now plays on the offensive line.
A running clock was used in the second half and the Lions coasted the rest of the way.
As been the case all season, Yosemite was out-manned, suiting up just 16 players compared to 48 for Kerman. The Badgers have just five lineman and almost the entire team plays both ways with fatigue being a factor in the second half.
|Score by quarters||1||2||3||4||Total|
Rushing: Yosemite, Lee 15-86, Woolsey 4-(-4).
Passing: Yosemite, Woolsey 17-23-148.
Receiving: Yosemite, Elam 5-27, Drew Lassos 2-16, Lee 7-79, Cameron Monahan 1-10, Anthony Moreno 1-12, Jacobi Morales 1-4.
Yosemite homecoming game Friday
After facing teams celebrating homecoming in three of the last four games, it's the Badgers turn to host a homecoming game Friday, hosting the Chowchilla Redskins (2-5, 0-2) on Raupp Field. This is a down year for the usually mighty Redskin program, losing many players to graduation last year.
The Redskins rely primarily on its ground game utilizing the vaunted Wing T. Overall, Chowchilla rushes for nearly 200 yards per game. Senior Troy Uphoff has rushed for 626 yards averaging eight yards a carry while scoring six touchdowns. Sophomore Anthony Stewart has 262 yards and four TDs.
Yosemite will counter with the pass. If Woolsey and the Badgers can minimize mistakes, the Badgers have a shot to get its first league win of the season. Yosemite moved the ball well against Kerman, but the Badgers have averaged five turnovers per game this season. Stop the turnovers and the Redskins ground game and the Badgers could surprise the Redskins. Game times: JV, 5 p.m., varsity 7 p.m.
North Sequoia League Oct. 18 scores
Liberty (7-0, 2-0) beat Sierra (3-4, 02) 28-6.
Washington Union (4-3, 2-0) beat Chowchilla (2-5, 0-2) 42-18.
Kerman (6-1, 2-0) beat Yosemite (1-6, 0-2) 56-12.
The first big NSL contest occurs this Friday when Liberty travels to Easton to face Washington Union. It will be a stiff test for the undefeated Hawks. Union is talented and athletic and has the best running back in the NSL in Javin Harrison.
If Liberty gets by Union, the Hawks will then travel to Kerman to face the Lions on Nov. 1, a showdown that could ultimately decide the NSL title.
Badger JV team loses to Kerman
After a close first quarter, the Lions took a 36-13 win over the Badgers (0-7, 0-2 NSL). Sophomore Brian Woolsey scored both Yosemite touchdowns. The Like the varsity team, the JV team is hampered by numbers the Badgers suited up 17 to the Lions 35.
Yosemite JV stats
Rushing: Tristan Eames 18-19, Josh Jackson 4-2.
Passing: Tristan Eames 11-29-1-97.
Receiving: Alex Alvarado, 3-30, Jarrett Barone 1-9, Corin Figueroa 1-10, Josh Jackson 2-8, Woolsey 4-40.