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Cougars Roar Past Mustangs In Battle Of 120
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Working to wrap up the Escalon ball carrier, Rafi Alvarez makes the tackle during varsity football action on Friday night. Escalon upended the host Mustangs in the ‘Battle of 120’ by a 41-21 final. Leader Photo By Jeff Kettering

Friday night felt more like a playoff game than a non-conference contest. Fortunately for the Oakdale High School Mustangs football team, it was not a playoff game. Escalon came in full force with packing their stands, standing room only and equipped with flags and noise makers, it was the visiting team that walked away with a victory. Escalon battled their way to a 41-21 road win in the Sept. 15 contest.

Escalon struck first as quarterback Donovan Rozevink threw a nine-yard touchdown pass to Sam Jimenez with 6:26 remaining in the first quarter. Oakdale regrouped and tied the game with 1:59 left in the first quarter on a Wes Burford three-yard rushing touchdown. In the second quarter Escalon outscored the Mustangs 21-7. With 10:58 left in the half, Rozevink found Jimenez for the second time on an 11-yard reception to go up 14-7. Josh Graham gave the Cougars a 21-7 advantage with 5:24 left in the half on a two-yard rushing touchdown. With 1:25 remaining in the half, Oakdale’s Joseph Delte scored on a 42-yard catch and run. Delte finished the game with three catches for 73 yards and a touchdown for Oakdale. The Cougars found the end zone one more time before the break on a nine-yard reception by Jimenez with just 16 seconds remaining in the half.

A scoreless third quarter led to the Cougars expanding their lead on a reception by Jamin Miller to go up 35-14. With just 7:42 remaining in the contest Escalon scored once again, this time with Ryan Lewis pulling in the touchdown pass to go up 41-14. Oakdale scored the final points of the night on a Burford nine-yard rushing score with 3:52 left in the game. Burford finished the game with 20 carries for 112 yards and two touchdowns.

On the defensive side for Oakdale, Charlie Kjeldgaard had 1.5 sacks and Sonny Rodin had a half sack.

“They (Escalon) know how to win football games. If you give them momentum, it is going to be hard to stop,” said Mustangs coach Garrett Martin following the game.

The Mustangs hope to bounce back from the home loss as they travel to Modesto to face Enochs High School this Friday, Sept. 22. The game will be held at Thomas Downey High School. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.


Junior Varsity - A rough night for the Mustang team as they were shut out 14-0 by the JV Cougars. Escalon scored a touchdown in both the first and fourth quarters of the game. Ben Gonzalez scored both touchdowns for Cougars from two and seven yards out. Oakdale will take on Enochs on Friday night at 5 p.m.


Freshmen - Thursday night the freshman boys defeated Hughson 35-12 in a home, non-conference game. Oakdale will host Enochs this Thursday night at 6 p.m.

This will be the final non-conference game of the season before they open up Valley Oak League play on Thursday, Sept. 28 against Sierra.

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Oakdale’s Charlie Kjeldgaard carries the flag on to the field as he and his teammates enter The Corral on Friday night, Sept. 15. Cross-county rivals, the Escalon Cougars from San Joaquin County and the Oakdale Mustangs from Stanislaus County, met up in non-league, preseason play. Leader Photo By Jeff Kettering