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Carter Harris is the leader of this team, and the senior wants his group to learn, process and move on from a Friday night fight that dulled an otherwise impressive game.
The Elk Grove High School quarterback also defends the image of his proud program, one of the storied outfits in the Sac-Joaquin Section.
“I’m a no-drama process guy, and we want to put this behind us and focus on Vacaville,” Harris said. “We hate being portrayed as the villain. We’re not thugs.”
Chaos ensued at Elk Grove in the second half Friday after Thundering Herd players took offense to what they deemed as cheap-shot tactics by Oakmont tacklers on Harris, including allegedly twisting his ankle in an attempt to break it in pileups. Harris appreciated the backing of his teammates but, like everyone in Elk Grove colors, disappointed in how it all turned out.
A fight broke out and four players were ejected, three from Elk Grove, which took the shine off a 41-22 Division II victory over the Vikings.
Tre’von Frazier of Elk Grove hit Oakmont lineman Josh Wallenstine in the back of the upper back and head with Wallenstine’s helmet. Game official Mike Teague was struck inadvertently when trying to break up another skirmish. He needed several moments to collect himself. (The Bee was initially told Bob Reeve was struck; Reeve was the game referee and Teague the umpire.)
Wallenstine is OK, his family told The Bee, as is Teague, according to regional referee assigner, Jim Jorgensen. Frazier, a popular and likable kid on the team, has expressed embarrassment and remorse, according to his coach, John Heffernan.
The ejected Elk Grove players will not play at No. 4-seeded Vacaville, per CIF policy that mandates a sit out. The incident ignited a flood of response on social media, some blaming Oakmont, some blaming Elk Grove, some blaming the media, with others pushed for the firing of coaches on both programs.
LOFTY LOGUE IN BEAR RIVER
Terry Logue won the 250th game of his storied Bear River coaching career Friday. The Bruins downed Highlands 64-26 in D-VI action and scored the most points in program history (the school opened in 1986).
Colton Jenkins and Tre Maronic led the early defensive charge, and Jenkins had a 75-yard kickoff for a score. Logue and Scott Savoie have been co-coaches since 2004. The Bruins (8-3) have had just one losing season since 1988 in one of the area’s best all-time streaks and take tradition and a gritty group to No. 2-seeded Hilmar (9-1) next.
Logue is one of four active coaches in the playoffs with 200 or more wins.
OTHER 200-GAME WINNERS
Roger Canepa has won 252 career games, including a ton in his current stop at Central Catholic in Modesto, the most recent a 58-14 rout of Tracy in a D-II opener.
One of the game’s great personalities, Canepa takes his group to fourth-seeded Jesuit on Saturday for a second-round contest.
Trent Merzon is a 207-game winner at Oakmont, where he played quarterback in the early 1980s. The Mustangs (7-3) had a bye on Friday and host Patterson.
Frank Negri won 248 games, mostly from his Foothill days, and is now an assistant at Rio Linda, the top seed in D-IV and the defending champion. Negri when asked how he’s doing at his advanced age, “Well, I’m above ground!”
COLFAX’S MARTELLO MOMENT
Tony Martello of Colfax is a 222-game winner, having survived a 42-38 thriller to beat Union Mine in a D-V opener on Travyn Heimann’s touchdown pass to Juliono Martello, who made a diving catch and fell into the end zone with 6 seconds to play.
Juliono is the son of the coach who grew up on the Colfax sideline as a ball boy. Colfax is 8-3. The defending section champions plays at top-seeded Center (10-0) just two weeks after falling to that team 50-0 for the Pioneer Valley League championship.
MIGHTY MONTEREY TRAIL MUSTANGS
Caleb Ramsuer rushed for 162 yards and two scores, Prophet Brown had his running-back moments and the offensive line stood tall in No. 5-seeded Monterey Trail’s 28-14 D-I win over Pleasant Grove, but it was the defense that saved this one.
Marcus Jones had 13 tackles and two sacks and Christian Calvan had the game-sealing stop on fourth-and-2 to dash Pleasant Grove’s upset chances. The D – and everyone – will have to be on board when Monterey Trail plays at No. 4 St. Mary’s in Stockton on Friday.
MIGHTY MUSTANG DAE’VONNIE WILLIAMS
Dae’vonnie Williams of Foothill rushed for 290 yards and five touchdowns to power his group past Liberty Ranch 47-30 in D-V. And he spoke like a team leader as the Mustangs ready for second-seeded Ripon (9-1).
“We’ve got to keep our heads,” Williams said. “You have to continue to work hard. Weight room, classroom, on the field.”
Said Foothill coach Mervin Brookins of Williams and his 8-3 team, “He’s very humble. He doesn’t talk much, and he’s a blue-collar kid. He wants to come in, work and lead by example, along with his offensive line. So we’re gonna rock with them till the wheels fall off.”
YOU GO, GEDEON
Zion Gedeon of Rosemont had a career night in rushing for 241 yards and three touchdowns to spur a 41-19 D-V victory over Livingston. He carried 33 times and scored three times.
“Overall, just a great kid,” Rosemont coach Rick Wanlin said. “Great team player. He really learned how to be a good running back this year. He has developed a trust with his lineman and hits the holes hard and runs fast.”
Rosemont (8-3) plays at No. 3 Amador (9-1) on Friday.
For full football brackets across the state, go to maxpreps.com.
Section D-I champion St. Francis, fresh off its 13th championship, hosts Biship O’Dowd of Oakland in a CIF Northern California Open Division opener on Wednesday.
St. Francis was the only Sacramento-area team to win a section title on Saturday though 15 other teams within this section or the Northern Section advanced to the NorCal rounds spanning seven divisions.
Go to cifstate.org for full brackets.