LOOMIS− Del Oro has become quite the chess opponent this season. It’s hard to predict from which angle the Golden Eagles will strike next.
In the season-opener, quarterback Carson Jarratt set the tone for 2018 with five touchdown passes – four of which to Dawson Hurst. In Week 2, Hurst scored via air and ground. In Week 3, Johnny Guzman returned two punts and an interception for a TD. In Week 4, running back Sheldon Conde ran in three touchdowns on 146 yards. And last week, Aiden Foster scored twice against Granite Bay.
This week, it was Josh Moore whose number was called in Del Oro’s 47-0 win over the Wildcats Friday.
Moore, a 215-pound senior slot receiver, ran in a 30-yard score in the first quarter and broke three Whitney tacklers en route to a 37-yard scoring catch in the third, becoming the latest Golden Eagle to score multiple TDs in a game for Del Oro..
“We have a lot of dudes, and we know how to utilize them,” said Moore after the game. “The defense has no way to stop us.”
The two teams went to a running clock midway through the third quarter with the Golden Eagles up 40-0.
“(Del Oro has) played in this league for a long time, so they’re battle-tested,” said Whitney head coach Zach McNally. “I have a lot of respect for how they play the game hard.”
The Golden Eagles closed the first half with a bang. After receiving new life when Del Oro was called for roughing the kicker inside their own end zone, Whitney drove all the way down to the Eagles’ 3-yard line.
But Wyatt Berry broke through for a sack of Wildcat quarterback Robert Jones, and on the next down, Tatuo Martinson blocked Zach Schreiner’s 30-yard field goal attempt. Hurst scooped up the loose ball and brought it 80 yards home to push Del Oro to a 26-0 lead seconds before halftime.
Jarratt hooked up with Guzman from 61 yards out on Del Oro’s third play from scrimmage. Dante Pericin ran in the two-point conversion, putting the Golden Eagles up, 8-0, early.
The Eagles added eight more on their next drive with Moore taking a 30-yard run to the house. Moore scooted in for the two-point attempt to put Del Oro up, 16-0, after one quarter.
Ryan Whalley added a 25-yard field goal in the second quarter for Del Oro. Whalley is 3-for-3 on field goal attempts this season.
In the third quarter, Jarratt found Moore, who broke free from three Whitney tacklers and reached the end zone from 37 yards out, extending the Del Oro lead to 40-0 at the 6:34 mark.
“I just said, ‘I’m going to get as many yards as I can’,” said Moore. “I just stuck my head down and just happened to pop out.”
Whitney had at least three sacks of Jarratt, including one each from Ethan Patterson and Brody Stone. Another bright spot for the Wildcats was sophomore receiver, Nick Tawney, who stepped in and made some big yards-after-catch plays to move the chains for Whitney.
“We brought some guys up and put some guys in different spots,” said McNally. “We’ve taken some steps, but they’re very small steps. They’re in a positive direction. It’s all about being able to be consistent.”
The Del Oro defense countered with an assortment of Martinson, Berry, Charlie Rogers and Carson Westlake, who had an 86-yard pick-six early in the fourth quarter.
“If it’s not one person’s day, it’s another person’s day,” said Martinson. “We’re grinders. We watch film; we game plan, and expose weaknesses.”
The Golden Eagles exceeded their average of nearly 45 points a game entering this weekend. With Friday’s shutout, Del Oro’s defense is now allowing just 12 points per game and just over three during Sierra Foothill League play.
Del Oro will take its bye week this Friday and begin to prepare for its homecoming game against Oak Ridge Oct. 5.