High School Football

Turlock capitalizes on Golden Valley mistakes

Turlock senior running back Andrew Lopez looks for a hole during a game against Golden Valley High at Golden Valley High School in Merced, Calif., Friday, Oct. 10, 2014. The Bulldogs beat the Cougars 50-29.
Turlock senior running back Andrew Lopez looks for a hole during a game against Golden Valley High at Golden Valley High School in Merced, Calif., Friday, Oct. 10, 2014. The Bulldogs beat the Cougars 50-29. akuhn@mercedsunstar.com

Mistakes continue to come at the wrong time for Golden Valley High’s football team.

The Cougars were hanging around early in the second half, trailing by two scores against Turlock. However, Turlock quickly turned two turnovers into touchdowns to pull away for a 50-29 win in the Central California Conference opener for both teams Friday night at Veterans Stadium.

“The good side is we had some kids step up tonight,” said Golden Valley head coach Dennis Stubbs, whose team dropped to 0-6 overall. “But it was the same story. It’s just the mistakes. When we make a mistake, it’s costly. They just come at the wrong time.”

The Cougars got a big play late in the first half when defensive back Orlando Robles stepped in front of a pitch by Turlock quarterback Bubba Moreno on an option play and returned it 66 yards for a touchdown to cut the Bulldogs’ lead to 21-15 with 2:21 left in the second quarter.

Moreno managed to lead his team down for a score, with the Turlock quarterback keeping the ball on a 4-yard run to take a 29-15 lead into intermission.

The game stayed that way until the Turlock defense recovered a fumble by Golden Valley running back Isaiah Montanez at the Cougars’ 23-yard line. Two plays later, running back Andrew Lopez darted 18 yards for a touchdown.

Two plays later, Turlock defensive back Jeffery Hines intercepted a pass from Cougars quarterback Armando Muzquiz and returned it 30 yards for a touchdown. The play left the Bulldogs with a 43-15 lead with 29 seconds to go in the third quarter.

“I’m happy,” said Turlock head coach James Peterson, whose team improved to 3-3. “It’s hard to get a good team win where everyone gets a little time and everyone can share the success. Success is hard to come by in the CCC.”

Moreno did a good job orchestrating the Bulldogs offense, throwing for a pair of touchdowns and running for another. Turlock racked up 272 yards on the ground.

Golden Valley had its bright spots as Muzquiz completed 19 of 31 passes for 283 yards and two touchdowns.

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Isaac Daniel caught six balls for 91 yards and a touchdown. Brandon Reyes hauled in six catches for 66 yards and a touchdown.

“I thought we were a little more productive on offense,” Stubbs said. “We went to the pistol this week to get the ball to our quarterback quicker and give him more time to make decisions. He’s going to get better.”

Golden Valley struggled to finish drives, twice turning the ball over on downs in the red zone. The Cougars also couldn’t overcome five turnovers.

“If we can eliminate the mistakes – the big, costly mistakes,” Stubbs said. “When we make a mistake, it costs us big. If we eliminate those, we have a chance to compete in the fourth quarter.”

The Cougars will try to pick up their first win next week at Atwater.

This story was originally published October 10, 2014 11:41 PM.

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