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Football Mustangs Rally For Last Minute Varsity Victory
On The Road
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Chase Lopez heads for the end zone, scoring the winning touchdown for the varsity football Mustangs with less than a minute left in a road game at Aptos on Aug. 25 as his teammates start the celebration. Jeff Kettering/The Leader

It is becoming a habit in the early season for the Oakdale High School varsity football team to put together a late game winning drive. On Aug. 18, Oakdale escaped Sonora with a fourth quarter comeback and this past Friday night, the boys overcame a 14-point halftime deficit to defeat Aptos on the road, 21-14. With less than a minute remaining Oakdale scored on a nine-yard rush by Chase Lopez to give Oakdale the win in the Aug. 25 contest.

“It was incredible, our fans and supporters came a long way to the game and did not leave. To hear them encourage us the whole night was special,” said sophomore Lopez. “We worked hard all night, even though the first half was rough we stuck together and made it out on top. The (winning) play itself is kind of a blur. I just know that we battled back as a team and I am excited for the rest of the season.”

First year head coach Garrett Martin said no real adjustment was made at halftime and the boys just needed to regain focus and confidence.

“There really were not any halftime adjustments to be honest. We made small mistakes and costly penalties stopped us from scorning in the first half. I will say that defensively we did a better job on third down (in the second half.)”

Oakdale’s Wes Burford scored a pair of touchdowns for the varsity squad. Burford, a sophomore, acknowledged his offensive line in the win.

“The guys up front have improved so much over the last few weeks from where they were over the summer. They made key blocks for us and gave us a lot of time tonight.”

Burford also said that he knows he has some big shoes to fill from his dad, Seth Burford, but feels up to the challenge.

“My dad did a lot for the program during his time and I want to be like him. I want to contribute like he did.”

Oakdale heads into a bye week this week and returns home for a showdown with Sheldon on Sept. 8. The Huskies had a 1-1 record after falling to Vacaville 41-6. Kickoff for this game is scheduled for 7 p.m. following the junior varsity game. This will also be the Mini Mustangs night where the young cheerleaders will be on the sidelines performing throughout the evening.

Oakdale’s junior varsity earned a 37-15 victory over Aptos on Friday night, while the freshman team defeated Lathrop 48-7 on Thursday night at home.

The JV will next host Sheldon on Friday, Sept. 8 at 5 p.m.

Freshmen will take the field on Thursday night, Sept. 7 in Modesto to face off with Central Catholic at 6 p.m.

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Wrapping up the Aptos ball carrier, varsity Mustangs Gage Ginger and Gavin Gleason make the tackle. The defense turned up their game a few notches in the second half, helping Oakdale come away with the victory in the Aug. 25 contest. Jeff Kettering/The Leader
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It was a touchdown run for JV player Ricky Torres on this carry, helping the visiting Oakdale squad to a 37-15 win at Aptos on Friday, Aug. 25. Jeff Kettering/The Leader