The California Pintos hosted Knob Noster for Homecoming Friday, Oct. 7, at Riley Field, where, after a long night filled with one penalty call after another, the Pintos defeated the Panthers 49-9.
"I was frustrated with the calls, as I'm sure the boys were," California Coach Marty Albertson said. "We had four holding calls and two high-low calls. It got to the point where you're thinking, just let them play ball."
Albertson added, "We ended up overcoming the penalties by putting up 423 yards of offense. Defensively we played pretty well, other than the one pass Knob Noster scored on. We've got to make that tackle."
The coronation was held prior to kickoff, where Elle Miller was crowned the 2011 California High School Homecoming Queen and Kamryn Koetting was crowned Homecoming Princess.
The football game got off to a good start for California as the Pintos scored on their first possession when Grant Burger connected with Phillip Longan for a 19-yard touchdown. After Efrain Torres nailed the PAT, California led 7-0.
The Panthers capped their opening drive of the second quarter with a 71-yard pass play from Peyton Milligan to Lyle Ragar for a TD. Niko Schwenneker's kick for the extra point failed and Knob Noster trailed 7-6 with 11:02 left to play in the first half.
Just one play later, Garret Baquet handed off the kickoff return to Anthony Price, who ripped off a 96-yard touchdown. Torres came through with the PAT and California led 14-6.
Knob Noster's next drive ended in a safety to improve the Pintos' lead 16-6. Two plays later, however, a California fumble was recovered by the Panthers, who ensued with a drive capped by a field goal with 5:20 left in the second quarter. Knob Noster now trailed 16-9.
The Pintos got back into the scoring game with 4:35 remaining in the third quarter via a 9-yard TD by Price. After Torres scored the extra point, California led 23-9.
The Pintos were far from done as they headed into the fourth quarter and ultimately racked up four more touchdowns within a five-minute frame. Quarterback Grant Burger ran in a 14-yard TD with 5:37 remaining, then freshman quarterback Jaden Barr scored on a 39-yard run.
With 2:30 left to play, California's Jerry Lutz intercepted Peyton Milligan's pass and ran in a 15-yard touchdown. Then, just two plays later, Lutz gave a repeat performance with another interception that resulted in a 1-yard touchdown just two plays later by Jason Wolverton.
The Panthers showed they hadn't given up as they blocked Torres' kick for the extra point with 38 seconds left to play, but the contest was definitely over and the Pintos came away with a 49-9 victory.
California's Grant Burger completed 3 of 7 passes for 39 yards, and Dylan Albertson completed 2 of 6 passes for 23 yards, for a total of 62 yards.
The Pintos had 48 carries for a total of 361 rushing yards.
Price led California with 18 carries for 141 yards; Christopher Allee had seven carries for 48 yards; Walter Juarez had five carries for 33 yards; Wolverton had 10 carries for 51 yards; and Albertson had six carries for 35 yards.
Lutz led California tackles with eight and two interceptions. Seth Fairchild and Logan Rowles each had five tackles, while Luke Burger, Torres and Albertson each had four tackles.
California will host Boonville at 7 p.m. Friday at Riley Field for first-round action in Class 3 District 8 football.
"Boonville's quarterback is a good athlete," Albertson said. "He's also a middle linebacker, so he's in about every play. They've also got some speed and two linemen that are big boys. We're going to have to put four good quarters together with no lapses."
Albertson added, "I think we're due to have a good game. We're going to practice hard this week and I think we can beat Boonville. Offensively, we've gotten some things straightened out, so we'll be focused and I think we're up for it."
The Parade of Champions featuring the Pinto football players will begin at 5:40 p.m. at Riley Field. "We're going to include all of the little leaguers this time," Albertson said.
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