Truckee junior varsity rallies for win
The first two plays of Saturday’s junior varsity game was a telltale of things to come, Truckee Head Coach Steve Ames said, with the Wolverines fumbling the ball to Live Oak on the opening kickoff before Kevin Wood forced a Live Oak fumble to Sean Collins.
That basically sums up a first half that was filled with fumbles and penalties from both teams. Robert Raber recovered a fumble in the first quarter. Pablo Esquival kept the fans on the edge of their seats by knocking down a Live Oak pass before intercepting a pass and running it for 20 yards. Evan Hyland and Raber sacked Live Oak’s quarterback to end the half with Truckee trailing 7-0.
Dylan Crosby played with an abundance of pride and passion on both sides of the ball, recovering a fumble to set up Truckee’s first score, a Ryan Macken 10-yard run.
Truckee was penalized after the play for unsportsmanlike conduct, which put the ball at the 18-yard line for the extra point attempt. The Wolverines went for two, unsuccessfully. Chris Raymer did an excellent job on special teams, Ames said, coming up with one of the best hits of the game.
The fourth quarter is when all the action came to a boil, with both teams scoring twice.
Live Oak scored first and tried an on-side kick. But Kevin Wood made a great catch. Trever Allen got a big interception when Live Oak looked like they were going to score again. Truckee then drove the ball down to set up a three-yard Allen touchdown. The PAT was good by Cruz Esquival, tying the game at 13-13 with nine minutes left to play. With five minutes left in the game, Live Oak scored on a screen pass and then scored two points on the conversion, leaving Truckee lagging at 13-21.
On fourth down Ryan Macken took it to the house, running 38 yards for a Truckee score with Cruz Esquival scoring another PAT. Live Oak scored on a pass play. With five minutes left in the game and 70 yards to go, Truckee started their climb to the end zone.
Truckee continued with big plays. Allen returned the kickoff to the 30 yard line, Macken ran for 12 yards and Justin Vosburgh broke loose for 45 yards, only to have it called back on a holding penalty. But Macken and Allen kept the rush moving forward. Truckee gave the ball to Macken, their workhorse, who bounced outside and literally ran over two would-be tacklers for the final touchdown. Justin Vosburgh scored two points on the conversion.
With 3:16 left in the game it looked like Live Oak was going to be able to score on a kick off return. Pablo Esquival came up with a huge tackle, stopping the drive at the Live Oak 30-yard line before it gained momentum. -Truckee’s defense held Live Oak, ending the game at 28-21.
“It was a great game,” said Pablo Esquivel, who offered his autograph immediately following the game. “We worked real hard in practice all week, so we deserve it.”
“I call this ‘Yin and Yang’ game. Every time we did something stupid, we came back and did something smart. Every time we had a great effort, we had a disappointing lack of effort. The kids really believed in themselves.
I thought the linemen did very well, with Eric O’Connell, Sean Collins, Bob Waters, Marshall Harvey, David Olsen, Brian Sipe, Kevin Wood, Deven Entriken and Dylan Crosby doing a great job. I can’t say enough about how good our running backs, Trever Allen, Evan Hyland, Justin Vosburgh, Pablo Esquival and Ryan Macken, performed. Ryan Macken is our workhorse and played with much heart and ‘D.’
BJ Carter did a pretty good job. Even though he threw two interceptions, he completed passes to seven different receivers and kept the team composed through some key drives.
Defensively we made big plays throughout the game. Most teams don’t win with 120 yards in penalties and five turnovers.”
Truckee freshmen got to play what’s called a “fifth quarter” with Live Oak.-
“I felt the freshman team did a pretty good job,” Ames said. “Chris Raymer had great plays on defense, with Eric O’Connell taking over as quarterback.”
Ryan Cook, Case Nielsen, CJ Akerman, Brad Cabral, Bob Waters, Hank Vink, Clayton McDonald, Josh Johnson, Steve Carter, Uriel Monroy, Ethan Harman and Eric McMullen played, and beat, the Live Oak team, which was made up of 40 players.
“It’s really hard for the freshman to get a lot of playing time on such a large team as Truckee’s,” Ames said. “This freshman class will be a very good football class in years to come. I look forward to working with them and watching their progress in the next four years.”
Rushing: Ryan Macken 19-187, Justin Vosburgh 7-61, Trever Allen 5-43, Evan Hyland 4-9, Pablo Esquival 2-15, total 37-315.
Passing: BJ Carter 8-18-2-79.
Receiving: Cruz Esquival 2-18, Macken 1-12, Vosburgh 1-7, Allen 1-15, Tucker Nevin 1-11, Nick Tennant 1-10, Hyland 1-6.