Vacaville runs past Granite Bay in 13-7 football finish

By: Ike Dodson■of the Roseville Press Tribune
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It took a Cameron Smith interception for Granite Bay High’s football team to preserve a win over Freedom last week.

On Friday, even two of them couldn’t make up the difference as visiting Vacaville prevailed 13-7.

Smith intercepted both passes deep in Granite Bay territory, but the Vacaville offense dominated possession and the Bulldog defense stifled the Grizzlies throughout.

Even though Granite Bay had a first-drive touchdown called back on an inadvertent whistle away from the play, this was hardly a “closer than the score indicates” situation.

Vacaville outgained Granite Bay 335-174, ran 54 times for 253 yards and broke Granite Bay’s back with two gigantic second-half drives.

They pulverized the Grizzlies’ defense across seven minutes of third quarter clock time, spanning 18 plays in one drive from the Vacaville 20, ending in a Daveon Harris touchdown.

Smith’s second interception and 30-yard return allowed Justin Yeaton to find Will Stabbert for a 10-yard touchdown pass with 4:15 to play.

On the ensuing kickoff, a terrible short kick directly into the arms of Vacaville’s most explosive player (Mikal Walker) set up the Bulldogs at their own 43.

The Grizzlies never got the ball back.

When they needed yards the most, Vacaville gobbled up 50 on the next 10 plays to end the game.

Both teams moved to 2-1 (preseason) after the contest.

“This game makes us better every single year,” Vacaville coach Mike Papadopoulos said. “This is a big playoff-type-atmosphere game.

“It’s a fun place to be tonight.”

Padadopoulos credited his defense for keeping the Bulldogs in the game. Granite Bay ran 30 times for only 110 yards and Yeaton was just 9 of 19 for 64 yards. Granite Bay missed a 25-yard field goal, fumbled away possession at midfield after Smith’s first interception and ran only 49 plays to Vacaville’s 73.

“We certainly did not play like Granite Bay High School football plays tonight and I think (Vacaville) had something to do with it,” Granite Bay coach Ernie Cooper said. “They took it to us tonight.”

Granite Bay opens the SFL at Folsom next week. The Bulldogs are ranked No. 11 in the country in the Xcellent 25 rankings. Folsom beat Burbank 61-13 Friday.

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