Motivated to make a statement after winning perhaps the region’s best league, Elk Grove High School emphatically delivered.
Jayden Machado passed for 265 yards on 17 of 20 passing and six touchdowns, three to Gavin Reinwald, and the defense produced another strong showing as the No. 4-seeded Thundering Herd trampled No. 13 Gregori of Modesto 49-8 in a Sac-Joaquin Section Division I opener in Elk Grove on Thursday night.
Elk Grove (10-1) won the Delta League, which advanced a section-leading six teams to the postseason, but earned only the fourth seed because of the strength of the field. Top-seeded Folsom and No. 3-seeded Oak Ridge played for the Sierra Foothill League championship last week, a game won by the Bulldogs 17-16. St. Mary’s of Stockton is the No. 2 seed.
Elk Grove, seeking a second successive return to the D-I finals, will play Turlock on Nov. 18.
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No. 3 Oak Ridge 44, No. 14 River City 14 in El Dorado Hills – Marco Baldacchino threw three touchdown passes, two to Cam Stone, as the Trojans (9-2) rolled over the Raiders (6-5). The Trojans rebounded from a heartbreaking 17-16 loss to four-time defending section champion Folsom in the regular-season finale with the Sierra Foothill League title on the line.
No. 2 Del Oro 79, No. 15 Laguna Creek 0 in Loomis – Stone Smartt and Mason Hurst combined for 245 passing yards and four touchdowns – all in the first quarter – and Dalton Gee, Camrion Davis, Bryce Edwards and Jimmy Verdi rushed for touchdowns as the Golden Eagles (9-2) built a 58-0 halftime lead en route to the win over the Cardinals (6-5). The Golden Eagles will play the winner of Friday’s Vacaville-Roseville game.
No. 3 Antelope 28, No. 14 Central Valley 13 in Antelope – Elijah Dotson rushed for three touchdowns and threw a touchdown pass to lead the Titans (11-0) over the Hawks (9-2). Dotson has scored 29 touchdowns this season. It was a matchup that featured the teams with the best combined win-loss record.
No. 4 Del Campo 49, No. 13 East Union-Manteca 13 in Fair Oaks – Tyler Dimino threw touchdown passes of 77 and 14 yards to Ignasio Salsedo and Greg Cabral rushed for 186 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries as the Cougars (6-5) defeated the Lancers (6-5). Del Campo players joined in letting East Union special-needs student Vinny Torrice score a rushing touchdown to end the game, and players from both teams rushed into the end zone to lift Torrice onto their shoulders.
No. 8 Vista del Lago 49, No. 9 Vanden 46 in Folsom – Brent Schaeffer threw a 70-yard touchdown pass to Vance Olives in the final minute as the Eagles (8-3) rallied to beat the Vikings (6-5). Vista del Lago led 36-13 at halftime before Vanden stormed back to take the lead on a 2-yard run with a minute to go.
No. 7 Yuba City 27, No. 10 Lincoln 19 in Yuba City – Brenndon Shalowitz rushed for 36- and 2-yard touchdowns, Bryce Rogers threw a 17-yard touchdown pass to Elijah Cisneros, and Maddux Bebout had a 12-yard touchdown run for the Honkers (8-3) to counter 93-, 68- and 17-yard touchdown runs by Ryan Graham for the Fighting Zebras (6-5). Lincoln had second and goal on the Yuba City 1-yard line, but the Honkers got a sack on the game’s last play.
No. 2 American Canyon 64, No. 15 El Camino 42 – Antoine Fleming threw four touchdown passes, one of 91 yards to Will Horne, and rushed for two touchdowns, but it wasn’t enough for the Eagles (6-5) against the Wolves (10-1). Darren Antes threw three touchdown passes for American Canyon.
No. 1 Manteca 42, No. 16 Dixon 13 in Manteca – The Buffaloes (10-1) jumped to a 20-7 halftime lead behind two Gino Campiotti touchdown passes and went on to beat the Rams (6-5).
No. 6 Center 29, No. 3 Sierra 27 in Manteca – A 98-yard kickoff return and 76-yard rushing touchdown highlighted the victory for the Cougars (8-3) over the defending D-IV and state champion Timberwolves (5-6).
No. 7 Colfax 42, No. 2 Hilmar 21 in Hilmar – Mason Ahrens returned an interception 91 yards for a touchdown and ran for a 19-yard touchdown and Marc Avila ran for two 1-yard scores, the second set up by an 66-yard interception return by Anthony Griggs, to lead the Falcons (8-3) over the Yellowjackets (9-2).
No. 2 Bradshaw Christian 35, No. 7 Delhi 3 in South Sacramento – The Pride (11-0) built a 21-3 halftime lead en route to the win over the Hawks (8-3). The Pride, in the playoffs for the 10th consecutive year, won the D-VI section title last year. Bradshaw Christian is 5-1 in section championship games.
NORTHERN SECTION DIVISION III
No. 1 Sutter 49, No. 8 Yreka 0 in Sutter – Tyler Reynolds threw two touchdown passes and ran 19 yards for a score, Trever Facey had a 66-yard touchdown run and a 13-yard touchdown catch, and Bryce Kunkle ran for 70- and 7-yard touchdowns as the Huskies (11-0) defeated the Miners (4-7) to advance to the Northern Section semifinals for the 10th consecutive season. It also was Sutter’s sixth consecutive shutout.
No. 1 East Nicolaus 46, No. 8 Williams 8 in Nicolaus – SJ Brown threw three touchdown passes – two to Corey Taylor and an 82-yarder to Chris Miller – and ran for a 12-yard touchdown to lead the Spartans (11-0) over the Yellowjackets (5-6) in the opening round of the playoffs.