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Homecoming game a big one for Eagles

By: Matt Long
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For a lot of reasons, this week’s Homecoming game against Liberty Ranch is a huge game for Vista del Lago’s varsity football team. The Eagles have had an up-and-down season with a loss to Oak Ridge, a win over Antelope, a loss t Casa Roble and then a win over Cordova last Friday. The Eagles would like to gain some momentum by winning two games in a row. Beyond that, Friday’s game is the school’s first Homecoming game and every team wants to win their Homecoming game. Finally, Liberty Ranch marks the team’s first Sierra Valley Conference league game so a win would get the team off to a 1-0 start to its conference schedule. “Building some momentum was our message to the team after Friday’s game,” Jones said. “First you put some plays together and then you put some drives together. Then maybe you play a good half of football and then you advance to playing a good game of football. Now we’ve got to see if we can put two good games together. “We’re almost halfway through our season so it’s time where all our work in practice starts paying off. It’s time to push forward to where we’re starting to jockey for position in our league.” The Eagles are coming off their first varsity shutout in school history, a 49-0 win over Cordova on Friday. Anthony Mull threw a pair of touchdown passes to Caleb Gottschalk in the first quarter and hooked up with David Slayton midway through the second, which gave the Eagles a 21-0 lead. Trey Hairabedian then rushed for two scores in the final 2:10 of the half to put the Eagles up 35-0 at the break. Steven Gudino and Ethan Pipion scored on 1-yard runs in the second half to finish the scoring. Defensively, Mason Reinert recovered a Cordova fumble that led to Vista’s first score. On Cordova’s next possession, Vista forced the Lancers to punt and Emery Vermilyea tackled the Lancers’ punter before he could get the kick off and that led to Vista’s second touchdown. Andrew Whitney added an interception for the Eagles in the second half. This week’s the Eagles are preparing for a team much like they were two years ago. Liberty Ranch (1-3) has a varsity football team for the first time this season and is coming off their first varsity win over Mira Loma. “We know what they’re going through,” Jones said. “I tell our guys this all the time. Every week we have an opponent but it’s more about what we’re doing and how we perform. We just want to improve each time we step onto the football field.” JV Eagles 21, Cordova 0 The junior varsity team set the tone for the varsity boys, as they posted a shutout against the Lancers. Offensively, Colin McCargo and Dustin Boswell caught touchdown passes from quarterback Justin Moore, Boswell’s coming from 65 yards out. Austin Eberle scored Vista’s final touchdown on a 10-yard run. “It’s always nice to get a shutout,” Vista coach Zac Kinter said. “We did some nice things in the first half, but it was a sloppy game offensively. I don’t know if it was a lack of concentration or effort or what, but we missed out on some opportunities. “We have high expectations and we’ve got to improve on our performance and learn how to play a whole game.” Freshman win 39-22 The Eagles scored touchdowns on their first three possessions on their way to a big win. Josh Pfeffer and Michael Majeski scored on touchdown runs, while Andrew Schantz hooked up with Tyler Kaim for another score. Vista’s offensive line, Cooper Valencia, Dalton Ostrander, Kevin Gough, Thomas Gust and Patrick Roche, dominated the line of scrimmage, continually opening holes for the running backs. Defensively, the Eagles allowed the Lancers less than 100 yards and had five sacks and two safeties. Ryan Kuzinich, Austin McGuire, JT Winkler, Austin Muir, Andrew Columbel, Dennis Sereda, Gough, Majeski, Austin Wertens, Kaim, Chris Veit and Brady Hein led the defense.