Joe Davidson

Sac-Joaquin Section football semis expected to be fights to finish

Elk Grove quarterback Jayden Machado has thrown for 2,143 yards and 35 touchdowns.
Elk Grove quarterback Jayden Machado has thrown for 2,143 yards and 35 touchdowns. Special to the Bee

Breaking down Friday’s Sac-Joaquin Section Division I and II semifinal games, all with 7 p.m. kickoffs:

Folsom (11-1) vs. Elk Grove (11-1)

Division: I

Outlook: Folsom has won four successive section championships and owns an 18-game winning streak in the section playoffs, a large-school record. That run includes title-game wins over Elk Grove in 2012 and 2015. Pressuring the quarterbacks will be key, as Folsom’s Joe Curry (3,096 passing yards, 46 touchdowns) and Elk Grove’s Jayden Machado (2,143, 35) have had monstrous seasons.

Oak Ridge (10-2) at St. Mary’s-Stockton (11-1)

Division: I

Outlook: The host Rams could have their finest team and they’ve had some great ones. St. Mary’s is balanced with Jake Dunniway (2,884 passing yards, 36 touchdowns) and Dusty Frampton (1,442 rushing yards, 29 scores). Oak Ridge has surged with multidimensional star quarterback Marco Baldacchino (19 passing touchdowns, 17 rushing) and running back Michael Pittman (970 yards, 12 scores).

Antelope (12-0) at Del Oro (10-2)

Division: II

Outlook: If defending champion Del Oro can somehow keep Antelope running back Elijah Dotson from hitting his average of 180.8 rushing yards, then anything goes. But containing Dotson would be a first, as he’s rushed for 2,170 yards and 25 scores, including last week’s effort to beat Grant 29-28 when he went for a season-best 287 yards and three scores. Del Oro is balanced and experienced with Stone Smartt (2,247 passing yards, 21 touchdowns) and backs Dalton Gee (937 yards, 15 scores) and Cam Davis (777, 11). The offensive and defensive line play will be key as those are strengths for both programs.

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