When the West Sierra League football schedule was re-booted a couple of years ago, the schedule-makers did not know that they would have one of the premier games in the Central Section for the final week of the season.
While Sanger and San Joaquin Memorial will battle for the CMAC championship in Sanger, Dos Palos High School will head down Interstate 5 to take on Coalinga. Both teams enter the contest with identical 4-0 records.
Last Friday, Dos Palos set up the championship-deciding match by quickly and efficiently disposing of Firebaugh, 41-21.
“It’s going to be a good game,” said Bronco head coach Rob Calvert. “I think if we don’t turn the ball over and don’t have any stupid penalties, we will be all right.”
The Horned Toads are strong on defense and feature a sophomore at quarterback.
“They have a lot of weapons on offense,” said Calvert. “They have two really good receivers that are going to cause matchup problems for us. We are going to have to do some things to make sure we’re giving guys help. Their quarterback is having a good season and they like spreading you out and throwing the ball. They are really good at the skill positions and their defense is solid.”
Against Firebaugh, the Broncos stormed out to a 27-0 first quarter lead before the Eagles could catch their breath. Sophomore quarterback Peyton Van Worth, who finished with 172 yards passing and three touchdowns, started off the scoring with a 28-yard touchdown pass to Sixto Ibarra. The duo clicked again on a 8-yard touchdown pass and freshman Andre Flores, just called up to the varsity, put the Broncos up 20-0 with an eight yard touchdown run.
Dos Palos put the game away late in the first quarter when Van Worth went back to pass from his 11-yard line. Senior wide receiver Aaron Jones, split out to the right, headed down the right sideline and Van Worth hit him in stride at the 35-yard line and Jones outraced the defender for an 89-yard scoring toss.
Flores finished the game with 75 yards rushing on 11 attempts.
Defensively, the Broncos were led by Ken Schulz, who had six tackles. Daniel Robbins and Hernan Hernandez each had four. Alberto Acebedo also had an interception.
Not wanting to single out a particular player, Calvert said that the entire defense is playing well.
“We are playing much better defensively, the whole defense,” he said. “We have now won five straight and are peaking at the right time. So, we are feeling pretty good going into this championship game.”