First-year Yosemite High football coach Chance Sigala did something his three predecessors did not do: Win in his debut. The Badgers traveled to Riverdale on Aug. 17 and beat the Cowboys 28-0.
“I felt we played well and followed the game plan we set,” Sigala said. “The kids were focused the whole game and played with a sense of urgency. We had few penalties which is great for our first game. Still, we will look at film. We will look to get better. Overall, I am proud of our guys. They played really hard.”
Coach Sigala, staff and players are adjusting to a new state high school sports schedule that started one week earlier than in years past. Never mind that football practices were limited because of poor air quality resulting from the Ferguson Fire. The team had to learn a new system and continue the summer conditioning program.
But the Badgers are an experienced team that is used to winning. The core of this team has played together from youth football through two straight high school playoff appearances, including last year’s 9-1 season. It was the type of start Sigala and the team hoped to see.
On offense YHS had 211 yards on the ground on 20 carries. There were no turnovers and few penalties.
The YHS defense may have stolen the show. The Cowboys never seriously threatened. Erik Peterson is the new defensive coordinator and special teams coach. His defense of only two returning starters had a strong first game. “Everyone pursued and swarmed virtually every play,” Peterson said. “We forced fumbles and had an interception. Our special teams gave us two touchdowns.” Defensive back Jaydn Carter had a fumble recovery and interception to lead the Badger defense.
YHS first scored on an 11-yard Tyson Mansfield pass to Paul Antonis. From there it was all on the ground. Nicholas Harper scored on a 6-yard run and YHS was up 14-0 at halftime. The Badgers finished their scoring in the third quarter. Kyler Schaeffer scored on a 59-yard run. Harper closed out the third with a 50-yard touchdown.
Passing: Mansfield 4 for 9, 39 yards, 1 TD
Rushing: Harper 10-120, 2 TDs; Schaeffer 6-93, 1 TD; Holden Eames 1-6.
Receiving: Antonis 3-32, 1 TD; Justin Micallef 1-7.
JV falls to Riverdale
Riverdale beat the Yosemite junior varsity 31-20, pulling away from a 14-14 halftime tie. YHS highlight: Garrett McMechan had a 95-yard kickoff return to start the scoring and had a 16-yard rushing TD.
Badgers host Parlier in home opener
The Badgers host the West Sequoia League Parlier Panthers on Friday, Aug. 24. JV kicks off at 5 p.m., varsity scheduled for 7. The Panthers were 2-8 overall in 2017, including a 63-7 loss at home to the Badgers. Parlier lost its 2018 opener last week at Woodlake 52-12.