The Varsity Escalon Outlaws looked to extend their winning ways while on the road this week. The Outlaws were guests to the Linden Jr. Lions for this week’s matchup in the Mother Lode Valley Football League.
It did not take long for the Outlaws to impose their will. Linden would receive the opening kick-off, but would only have possession for one play. Fabian Torres stepped in front of the intended Jr. Lions’ receiver to give the ball over to the Outlaws. Escalon cashed in on their first opportunity with the football. It took two quick plays and Logan Webster powered into the end zone from 11 yards out. The point after kick was converted by Torres giving Escalon all of the lead they would need on the day at 8-0.
Linden would turn the ball over again with an interception on their second possession. Carson Prim would steal the ball away from the intended target giving Escalon their second possession. Escalon would score on the very next play as Elijah Lattig raced with a reverse from the left around the right end and down the sideline. Torres would again add the point after kick conversion extending the lead to 16-0 Outlaws.
The Outlaws defense would surrender very little to the Jr. Lions offense. The defense was led by Alex Guevara, Shane Campbell and Luke Anderson. Escalon’s offense often took over working with a short distance to gain to find the Linden end zone.
Escalon would tally the next two scores through the air as Ty Harris found Lattig on a 7-yard pass, and then Harris would connect with Anderson on a screen pass that resulted in a 35-yard score. Both of the point after kicks missed their mark bringing the halftime tally to 28-0.
Escalon started the second half receiving the kick-off. After a long return deep into Linden territory Escalon would start up the offense on the 25-yard line. Prim would tote the ball on a 7-yard run into the end zone. Torres would be true on the point after kick attempt extending the lead further 36-0.
Prim would intercept another Jr. Lions’ pass attempt during the next Linden possession. Linden would break the shutout, stepping in front of an errant Outlaws pass returning the ball 64 yards to the end zone. The point after touchdown pass was incomplete making the score 36-6.
Escalon added a score late on a plunge into the middle of the line by Giavanni Brunetti. Torres added the point after kick that brought the score to its final of 44-6.
The Jr. Varsity Escalon Outlaws faced their toughest opponent to date when they faced the Linden Jr. Lions, both teams having a 2-0 Division record heading into this match-up. The winning team would have the inside track to the #1 seed in the playoff hunt.
The Outlaws forced an early mistake as JP Lial fought with the Jr. Lions receiver on the first play from scrimmage following the opening kickoff. Escalon could not press this opportunity to full advantage, however.
Linden’s offense wasn’t needed to make their mark on the scoreboard. The Jr. Lions’ return man raced 70 yards to the Escalon end zone. The point after touchdown kick could not be converted, so Linden would hold a 6-0 lead.
Escalon threatened on the ensuing kickoff as Christian Tinoco raced 45 yards with the football deep into Linden territory. The Outlaws would stall on the doorstep of the Linden end zone as the Lions held at the goal line. CJ Miller would pounce on a loose ball giving Escalon another chance before the half would expire, but all was for naught. The score would remain 6-0 Linden’s advantage at the halftime break.
The Outlaws received the opening kickoff of the second half, and they would make the most of their first possession of the new half. Large chunks of yardage were gained on tough running by Evan Lewis. Escalon was able to break onto the scoreboard with a 34-yard run by Tinoco. Josh Miller connected with Tinoco on the point after touchdown conversion pass giving Escalon a 7-6 lead.
Escalon would increase their lead, again it was the swift feet of Tinoco showing the way. Tinoco received a Linden punt and raced 65 yards to the Jr. Lions’ end zone. Tinoco’s run was made possible by key blocks from Ryker Peters and Miller. The point after kick was not converted leaving the score 13-6 in favor of the Outlaws. Linden would answer this score with a huge return on the ensuing kickoff. The Jr. Lions were able to find the Outlaws end zone, but would miss on the point after conversion pushing the score to 13-12 with Escalon holding the slimmest of leads.
Linden would take up most of the fourth quarter game clock on a punishing drive ending with a touchdown and point after kick conversion surging them into the lead 20-13. Escalon would get one more try, taking possession with 1:15 left on the game clock. The Outlaws could not muster a comeback with the time they had to work with, and would suffer their first defeat of the season.
The young Outlaws faced off with the Linden Jr. Lions. Escalon looked to improve against another tough opponent. The Outlaws offense is still looking for traction, but showing signs of improvement with hard running by Ryan Lewis and Jamin Miller. Alan Jimenez also contributed with a pair of pass receptions from Miller.
The Escalon defense surrendered 14 points, all in the first half. After making adjustments the young Outlaws held the Jr. Lions scoreless in the second half. The defensive effort was led by Giovanni Chavez, Rubin Moreno and Gideon Gerber.
The youngest of the Outlaws gang also were able to compete against the Linden Jr. Lions. Hezekiah Griffin opened running lanes for the running backs from the center position. Noah Dooley and Oscar Lopez displayed prowess on the defensive side of the ball.
All teams will be in action on Saturday, Oct. 8, hosting the Hughson Huskies in games for the Outlaws Homecoming celebration.