After a big bounce back win over visiting Crater of Oregon at the Corral on Sept. 2, the Oakdale Mustangs were off this past Friday. All three levels of the Mustangs programs had an early bye week, just two weeks into the season, but will be back in action this Thursday and Friday against Campolindo High School.
On Thursday night the freshman Ponies host the Bay Area visitors with kickoff scheduled at 6 p.m. New Ponies head coach Rod Long has the boys off to a promising start through two games (2-0). In their two games, Oakdale has averaged 34.5 points per game and has given up an average of 10.5 points per game. Campolindo is currently 1-1 on the season. Thursday night’s showdown will be the third straight home game for the freshmen, and the team will also host Sierra on Thursday, Sept. 22 in the Valley Oak League opener.
Friday night both the junior varsity and varsity clubs head to Moraga to face the Cougars. Oakdale will travel 172 miles round trip for the game. Campolindo’s junior varsity team is currently 2-0 while the Oakdale Colts are looking for their first win (0-2) after two disappointing losses to start the campaign. The team’s running game has been impressive and their defense has also showed early season promise, so the squad is hoping to string four strong quarters together to get their first win before Valley Oak League action begins Friday night Sept. 23.
A tale of two weeks for the varsity boys; a shocking 27-13 road loss to century-long rival Sonora in the opener, and answering that with a 47-13 home win over Crater. What team will take the field on Friday night? Only time will tell, but as he has for over a decade, Coach Trent Merzon will have the team focused. In their home win all three phases of the game were clicking in the Mustang victory. Oakdale’s running game racked up major yards, while the defense dominated the line of scrimmage for all four quarters and middle linebacker Joshua Jacobson scored on a 95-yard interception return late in the fourth quarter. Field position was won by Oakdale’s speedy special teams, setting up the offense with valuable field position to start the majority of drives, and return man Zach Campbell nearly had an 80 yard touchdown on a punt return but it was negated by a penalty.
Standing in the way of a Mustangs victory this week will be the 2015 CIF State Football Champion Division III runners up, the Cougars. The Cougars went 14-2 overall last year and fell 27-3 to La Mirada in the championship game. Campolindo currently holds a 2-1 record in 2016, winning their Friday night game at Deer Valley by a 27-7 final.