Trojans look to rebound after loss to Folsom

By: Matt Long Telegraph Sports Editor
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After turning in solid performances in their first five games, Oak Ridge struggled Friday against Folsom and it showed on the scoreboard. The Trojans picked a bad time to play their worst game, but credit the Bulldogs, who played their best game and went on to win 49-21. The win dropped Oak Ridge’s record to 5-1 on the season. “We certainly didn’t play our best game and that’s what it takes to beat Folsom,” Oak Ridge coach Eric Cavaliere said. “Folsom’s a very good team. They were prepared and they executed with very few mistakes. I tip my cap to them.” Oak Ridge must rebound this week if it wants to get back on track and it must do it against a team they’ve never beaten – Sheldon. The Huskies are coming off a 55-20 loss to Pleasant Grove and are 0-1 in the Delta River League and 3-3 overall. The Huskies feature running back Curtis Juniel and wide receiver Ben Alickovic and are an athletic bunch, according to Cavaliere. The question that needs to be answered is how will the Trojans rebound following the disappointing loss to Folsom? “These guys will respond,” Cavaliere said. “Their strength is that they’re a tight-knit bunch and their great friends. I believe they’ll have a great week of practice and will play their best game against Sheldon.” Folsom 49, Oak Ridge 21 In the Delta River League opener and the biggest game of the season to date for both teams, Folsom turned what most thought would be a close game and blew out Oak Ridge on their home field. Oak Ridge had hoped to beat the Bulldogs for the first time since 2006, but fell behind in the first half and weren’t able to make a comeback in the second half. “When you’re trying to play catch-up with a team that has an offense like Folsom, it’s a tough task,” Cavaliere said. “We were outplayed tonight and out-coached. You can’t turn the ball over and fall behind Folsom and we had a chance to make some plays on defense tonight and we didn’t do it.” Folsom took a 7-0 lead on a 9-yard pass from Jake Browning to Harry Lipnosky, one play after Folsom converted a fourth-and-10 with a 36-yard pass to Troy Knox. Oak Ridge tied the scored with a 6-yard pass from Jason Samuels to Tanner Hughes, but Folsom answered with another Browning-to-Lipnosky TD pass, this one from 30 yards out. Eddie Flores then picked off his first pass of the game and returned it to the Oak Ridge 31. Six plays later, Browning found Phillip Carter on a 7-yard TD pass on fourth down, which put Folsom up 21-7. Oak Ridge got as close as seven points the rest of the way when Samuels hooked up with Byron Spain on an 18-yard pass, but it was all Folsom after that. Oak Ridge’s lone score of the second half was on a 27-yard touchdown pass from Samuels to Justin Priest. JV Folsom 35, Oak Ridge 7 Oak Ridge’s lone score came on a touchdown pass from Andrew Lackowski to Tanner Emanuel after the Bulldogs scored the first 35 points of the game. Freshman Oak Ridge 28, Folsom 7 Oak Ridge improved to 6-0 on the season with the win over Folsom. Gage Webb had 15 carries for 106 yards and a touchdowns, while also throwing a touchdown pass to Kevin Kassis on a halfback pass. Quarterback Ian Book completed 10-of-14 passes for 90 yards, including a touchdown pass to Tommy Dunnigan. The Oak Ridge defense had an exceptional performance, limiting Folsom’s prolific spread offense to only one touchdown on a broken play. Alex Voege returned an interception for a touchdown, while defensive backs Josh Corr, Luke Goins, Christian Dardano and Dunnigan provided consistent pass coverage. “We had a great week of practice leading up to the Folsom game,”?said assistant coach Butch Santos. “Our guys were focused and together, and then we came out and played a very physical game. At 6-0 on the season, we have a good thing going and we need to stay focused on the details and the fundamentals next week.” Oak Ridge travels to Yuba City on Thursday to face River Valley.