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  • José Luis Villegas /

    Rio Linda's Marcel Brown rushes the ball against Del Campo last season. Friday, the 6-foot, 205-pound junior tailback sparked the Knights in their win over Ponderosa with his 99-yard return.

  • Joe Davidson

High school football: Rio Linda's Brown joins select club with 99-yard return

Published: Sunday, Oct. 6, 2013 - 12:00 am | Page 2C
Last Modified: Monday, Oct. 7, 2013 - 12:35 pm

Marcel Brown didn't just take a kickoff into the end zone Friday night. He raced into history.

The Rio Linda junior's 99-yard kickoff return sparked a 21-7 win over Ponderosa, thus ensuring his name will forever be in the national high school record books. Brown's effort ties a national mark in distance of yards as modern rules forbid prep kickoff returns out of the end zone.

The 6-foot, 205-pound tailback is quickly becoming perhaps the top such position player in school history. He didn't play in Rio Linda's lone loss, a 22-14 setback at Roseville when the Tigers blocked a game-winning field-goal attempt and ran it back for a score as time ran out. Coach Mike Morris benched Brown for that contest for "not fulfilling obligations to our offseason program."

Morris heaps praise on his star while also maintaining a firm hand of discipline.

"Probably cost us the game," Morris cracked later of benching Brown against Roseville. "My wife (Debbie) said, 'You and your stupid ethics!' "

Here's a look at area players who are tied for the national prep record for the longest TD run of 99 yards, as listed by the Cal-Hi Sports State Record Book and Almanac:

• Jim Koehler, Galt vs. Sutter Creek, 1953.

• Allen Nicholas, La Sierra vs. Bella Vista, 1961.

• Scott Wildermood, Lincoln vs. Folsom, 1980.

• Damen Wheeler, Valley vs. Grant, 1995.

• Kevin Tennerson, Mesa Verde vs. Encina, 1998

• Brian Hanson, Del Oro vs. Elk Grove, 2004.

Lonnie Trillo and Donald Hair share the regional record for longest fumble returned for a touchdown at 99 yards. Trillo, of Johnson, did it against Bishop Armstrong in 1964 and Hair, of McClatchy, did it against Davis in 1984.

Earl Hanibal of since-closed Norte Del Rio has the area's longest interception return (106 yards) for a score against Foothill in 1973. Capital Christian's Paul Roberson is second with a 105-yarder against Highlands in 2005.

Titans hold on – Bee No. 8 Burbank held off upstart Sacramento 34-32 in a wild Metropolitan Conference game Saturday in Oak Park.

Calvin Green caught a 60-yard touchdown pass from Ernest Jenkins in the first half, and he put the Titans ahead 34-26 with a 95-yard kickoff return. Caden Voges hit Damen Wheeler for a 19-yard touchdown for Sacramento to pull within 34-32 with 1:52 left, but the Dragons were stopped on a two-point attempt, and the Titans recovered the onside kick. Voges hit Wheeler twice for touchdowns and Lonny Powell rushed for two scores for Sacramento.

Record arm – Colfax senior quarterback Michael Wilson tossed a school-record seven touchdowns, four to Chas Reisinger, to toast homecoming night for the Falcons in a 48-19 win over Mesa Verde. The No. 20 Falcons are 5-0 after struggling to a 4-6 mark last season. Every offensive starter returned for coach Tony Martello, and he leads his team against 5-0 Bear River in a Pioneer Valley League opener Friday.

Wilson passed for 346 yards. He bettered by one the school touchdown passing mark set by Marcus Arroyo in 1997.

D at the end – In a wild night of offense in Auburn, it was a defensive stop that sealed Woodcreek's 48-47 victory over Placer. The Timberwolves stuffed a two-point conversion run with 53 seconds to play. Isaiah Harbarth tossed three of his four touchdown passes to Malcolm Thomas in rallying Woodcreek from 14 down in the third quarter.

Lenny Nelson had a 76-yard kickoff return and caught a touchdown pass for Woodcreek, which opens Sierra Foothill League play against No. 6 Del Oro on Friday.

First-year Woodcreek coach Jason Stowers spent the past three seasons on the Del Oro staff.

Follow Joe Davidson on Twitter @SacBee_JoeD. For a podcast previewing league races, go to

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