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High-flying Vista on a roll after big win over River City

By: Matt Long/Telegraph Sports Editor
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Vista del Lago’s offense has been warming up, playing better with each game. On Friday, the defense stepped up and held a potent River City offense to 14 points. The convincing 41-14 win over River City served notice to the rest of the Sierra Valley Conference that the Eagles are the team to beat. At 2-0, the Eagles sit atop the standings. “I think when we play well we’re pretty good and we played well on Friday night,” Vista coach Chris Jones said. “Our defense played really well Friday and that helps tremendously. We’ve been explosive on offense this year and Aaron (Young) has been terrific.” Jones said that safeties Seth Sobottka and Austin McGuire led the way defensively, as Sobottka led the team in tackles and McGuire’s interception in the second quarter set up a touchdown just before the half. The Eagles face Galt on Saturday, a team that has failed to win a game this season. “I feel we’re at our best offensively when we spread the ball around and get everyone involved,” Jones said. “That’s when we’re tough to defend and that’s what I hope to see on Saturday. Young leads Vista over River City The combination of a smothering defensive effort and a balanced offensive attack keyed the Eagles to the win over River City. Aaron Young threw for 418 yards on 25-of-35 passing as Logan Smith caught two touchdowns on his way to a 14-catch, 220-yard receiving night. “We’ve been saying that we have the most complete offense since the start of the season and I think this game proved it,” said Young, whose four touchdown passes were spread out to three different receivers. In the third quarter, Chris Cooper hauled in a short completion and ran 89 yards downfield for a score before Taylor Wisinski grabbed one of his own from four yards out to cap the Eagle scoring with 8:48 to go in the fourth. “Aaron executed tonight. That was our game plan. A lot of people were going to be open and they caught the ball. It was a group effort tonight,” said Smith, who last week caught a Northern California record 24 passes in a win over Liberty Ranch. Vista squandered a gift of a scoring opportunity when they recovered a fumble on the opening kickoff. The Eagles got within the one-yard line before Young’s pass was picked off by Malik Dumentz, who returned it 21 yards out of his own end zone. The Raiders finished that drive on a four-yard run from Uriah Clark. Ethan Pipion took a pitch to the left side from 26 yards out and broke tackles along the way to tie the game at seven midway through the second quarter. Vista’s defense manufactured a three-and-out in the next possession. From their own 11, Young then connected with Smith, who went 89 yards to the house. Trevor Meredith’s PAT gave Vista a 14-7 lead. Sophomore Austin McGuire intercepted a Raider pass to give the Eagles another chance to score with 19 ticks left in the half. Pipion ran in a one-yarder as the halftime buzzer sounded to extend the lead to 27-7. “I thought our defense played a little more consistent tonight. We gave (River City) a little sense of life for awhile after that interception but our defense did a great job of getting our offense back on the field,” said Jones. “Aaron really spread it out tonight. It’s nice when we can have that diversity on offense. Logan’s been our go-to guy, but we’re better when we can distribute the ball around to our other guys.” JV Raiders 26, Eagles 14 After last week’s loss against Liberty Ranch, coach Kevin Placek wanted his JV team to come out firing from the get-go. Despite two big-play touchdown catches from Brady Hein in the first half, Vista could not hold River City in the second half, eventually falling, 26-14 and moving to 0-2 in league. “We did pretty much what we wanted to do. We were able to score early in the game and we looked pretty good,” said Vista offensive coordinator Anthony Mull. “We had four of our regular starters go down with injuries so we’re cut a little thin right now and we need to find some people to step up and fill in now.” Nick Pecoraro contributed to this article.