After five wins, Folsom gets a bye

By: Matt Long Telegraph Sports Editor
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Folsom High’s varsity football team completed a perfect non-league schedule with a 56-7 drubbing of Casa Roble on Friday night. The Bulldogs have played well, albeit inconsistent at times through the first five games, but are glad to be 5-0 heading into the Delta River League season, which opens Oct. 5 at Oak Ridge. Folsom has no game on Friday, as the bye week comes in between their non-league and league schedule. “We want the bye week there for a reason,”?Folsom coach Kris Richardson said. “We knew we were going to face some tough, physical teams in non-league. We’re glad to be 5-0 as that sets the table for what we want to do in league. This week we’re going to address the things we feel we need to improve on. The key is we want to keep on improving. We know we’re a long way from where we want to be.” Folsom got out of the non-league schedule without any major injuries. They’ll get a little bit of rest this week, while also knowing they’ve got their toughest game to date coming up in the Delta River League opener on Oct. 5. “It’s nice to have an extra week to prepare for Oak Ridge,”?Richardson said. “We know each other pretty well, but we’ll need that extra week because it’s going to be a great challenge.” Bulldogs overpower Casa Roble, 56-7 The 56-point offensive explosion is nothing new for Folsom. It was the defense and special teams, however, that ignited much of the offensive flame. “It was a great effort by our defense. We always say that if our defense can get us the ball back to the offense then we know we can score. The defense played their butts off tonight and we kept scoring,” said Richardson. “Special teams are really buying into what we’re trying to do. Our kickoff team really has everyone guessing and they’ve just been incredible.” Every time the Rams made a nice play, the Bulldog defense responded with an equally — if not more —i mpressive play for zero or negative yardage. Folsom didn’t allow Casa across midfield until its fourth drive of the game, well into the second quarter. Junior kicker Ben Trumm had a busy night, nailing all eight of his point after attempts and keeping the Rams’ return team guessing with his strategically unpredictable kickoffs — two of which resulted in onside recoveries for the Bulldogs. “Ben’s an incredible kicker. He can put the ball anywhere. He treats it like a golf shot. He can chip it, drive it, pitch it. He’s got a unique spin to the ball and his placement is incredible. He works really hard at it and we’re taking advantage of it,” said Richardson. Quarterback Jake Browning (27-41, 279 yards, two TDs) connected with Phillip Carter twice for touchdowns inside the red zone during the second quarter to give Folsom a 42-0 halftime advantage. Parker Boone and Derek Stiles each recovered Trumm’s onside kicks in the first quarter, leading to two scores for the Bulldogs. The first was on a two-yard run from Harry Lipnosky, followed by Josiah Deguara’s three-yard blast that put Folsom up by three scores. Bailey Laolagi ran in the first of his two TD runs on a 14-yard score and Deguara weaved left-to-right through traffic to cash in on a 55-yard run to provide the other two first-quarter touchdowns for the Bulldogs. “We don’t take any plays off. Our (first unit) really stepped it up tonight and pitched a shutout,” said linebacker Chaz Arnold, whose two fumble recoveries also led to Bulldog touchdowns. “We’re going to enjoy this bye week but we’re still going be working hard,” said Lipnosky. Folsom (5-0) will rekindle its rivalry with Oak Ridge in two weeks to begin Delta River League action. “Obviously the Folsom/Oak Ridge rivalry is a great thing. They’ve got a great team this year. Our guys will be ready and so will theirs,” said Richardson. “What a great way to open up the Delta River League season.” JV Bulldogs 28, Rams 0 Head coach Jordan Banning has been extremely proud of the way his JV Bulldog team has been playing as of late. A no-quit and finish-strong mentality was evident in Folsom’s latest victory over Casa Roble on Friday night, 28-0. “Our defense has been great all year. We always trust our defense and they play absolutely amazing football every game,” said Banning, whose team moves to 5-0 before the bye week. “We’re really comfortable in those short-field situations. We played really aggressive and everything worked out well for us. It’s huge for the kids’ confidence to go into league undefeated, especially because so many of our sophomores play up. Momentum is everything in high school football and right now, we’ve got a lot of it.” Casa Roble recovered a Folsom fumble inside the Bulldogs’ red zone with less than two minutes to play but the Bulldog defense held tough and denied the Rams a score to preserve the shutout. Freshman 53, Rams 34 The freshman team continued its winning ways with a 53-34 victory over Casa Roble to kick-off Homecoming weekend activities on Thursday. The focal point of the offense continues to be the quarterback position. Folsom’s quarterbacks accounted for five touchdown passes, which by themselves totaled approximately 200 yards as well as three touchdown runs which totaled just less than 100 yards. “Our skill guys receive the majority of the accolades, but the key to any successful team is the offensive line,” said coach Terry Richards. “The offensive line continues to play hard every down against opponents who, on average, are bigger players. They’re the heart and soul of the team. When they play well, we are successful.” Defensively, the Bulldogs played well in spurts but are still working on becoming more consistent. The Bulldogs had trouble getting off the field on third and fourth downs. “When you jump offsides and don’t win the one-on-one battles within each play, teams will eventually capitalize on those mistakes.” Richards said. The teams played a fifth quarter, which is an extra period specifically to showcase those players who did not see significant playing time during the first four quarters. “The fifth quarter was the highlight of the night,” Richards said. “It does so much for the morale of the team to see all the players get significant playing time and to be rooted on by their peers under the lights and get to watch themselves on film.” The Bulldogs enter a bye week and will begin their prep for Delta River League play. The league season opens with an away game with Oak Ridge in two weeks. Nick Pecoraro contributed to this story.