Two runners eclipsed the 100-yard mark and Oakdale High’s varsity football team forced five East Union turnovers in a 63-21 rout of the visiting Lancers at The Corral on Friday.
The win advances Oakdale to 5-2 overall and 4-0 in the Valley Oak League.
Oakdale plays host to the 1-6 Weston Ranch Cougars on Friday, before closing the year with back-to-back contests against Manteca (7-0) and Sonora (5-2).
“Next week against Weston Ranch is a huge football game, and they are very good and they had (East Union) beat,” Mustang coach Trent Merzon said. “We are going to show up at Monday’s practice and we’re going to get ready to do all the little things right.”
East Union entered Friday’s contest on the momentum of a 5-1 season and last-moment defeat to the reigning co-VOL champions, Sierra.
But things quickly went awry when Oakdale flushed Lancer quarterback Teejay Gordon out the pocket and into an official for a first quarter sack. The play ultimately resulted in the first of three Oakdale fumble recoveries.
The Mustangs scored on the ensuing drive, and took touchdowns from their next two possessions for a 21-0 lead with 8:44 remaining in the first half.
East Union bounced back with Gordon’s 31-yard scoring strike, but Oakdale scored on back-to-back plays from scrimmage (Marcus Hernandez run, Vince Thompson interception return) to take a 35-7 lead at the break.
East Union added a score to start the third quarter and one more with five minutes to play, but found no defensive answer for both starting and reserve Mustang runners who followed huge holes to touchdowns from as far as 42 yards out.
Hernandez ran 20 times for 103 yards and four touchdowns in the win. Daniel Linder’s bursts to the outside translated to 15 rushes for 143 yards and a score, leading Oakdale’s 382 total rushing yards. Marcus Northcutt (five rushes, 30 yards), Jeff Donnelly (5-57, two TDs) and Gino Valente (41-yard touchdown) also ran well.
Justin Martin converted all nine of his point after attempts, and also hauled in an interception and fumble recovery in the win.
“Our defense did a great job tonight forcing turnovers,” Merzon said. “I think they were very physical — and that was the number one goal — to be physical.”
Oakdale’s freshmen and JV teams also ousted East Union for a sweep on the week, including a 56-8 win for the Mustang JV squad on Friday. As a program, Oakdale is a combined 12-0 in league play.