The Lemoore Tigers lifted the Milk Can trophy high in the sky and quarterback Cort Groathouse was chugging a carton of milk on Friday, Nov. 7, as the Tigers celebrated their rivalry victory and West Yosemite League championship, defeating previously unbeaten Hanford 24-13 in the 71st annual Milk Can game held at Tiger Stadium.
With the victory over their oldest rival, the Tigers not only finish the regular season at 10-0 and 6-0 in the WYL, but clinched the No. 2 seed in the Central Section Division II playoffs. Lemoore gets a bye week and will await the winner of the Redwood-Visalia (No. 7 seed) and Tehachapi (No. 10) matchup on Friday, Nov. 14.
Defensive end Zack Frazier set the tone right away for Lemoore. The senior - who entered Tiger Stadium with a section best 14 sacks - grabbed Hanford's powerful junior running back Joseph McDaniel and tossed him back for a 9-yard loss during the first play of the rivalry contest.
From there, the Tigers kept their stronghold on defense. They only gave up one explosive play in the first half: a 59-yard run by McDaniel. That run helped set up a 6-yard touchdown scamper from quarterback Ryan Johnson, tying the game at 7-7 in the second quarter. But the Tigers ended the half with a 50-yard touchdown strike from Groathouse to Reggie Davis, extending the lead to 14-7.
Lemoore held the Bullpups to 105 total rushing yards, including 89 from McDaniel. Johnson finished his night with 101 yards on 9-of-20 passing.
The Tiger offense was led by Trey Perryman's 137 yards on 28 carries and one 8-yard touchdown run. Davis stretched the Bullpup defense with five catches for 126 yards and two touchdowns of 58 and 50 yards. The junior averaged 25.2 yards per catch.
Despite the loss, Hanford claimed the No. 1 overall seed in the section DIII postseason, as seedings were announced on Saturday, Nov. 8.
UNBEATENS GO DOWN IN THE 805
Paso Robles and Pacifica-Oxnard saw its undefeated run come to an end, as both teams dropped its season finale against Atascadero and Oxnard High, respectively.
Against the Greyhounds, the Bearcats surrendered three rushing touchdowns to Marc Martin and an interception by AHS sealed the 28-18 road loss. Atascadero created a three-way tie for the PAC-5 title with the victory by finishing 8-2 overall and 3-1 in league play. Paso (9-1, 3-1 in the PAC-5) and Arroyo Grande (8-2, 3-1 in the PAC-5) also get a piece of the league championship.
Pacifica had its troubles against the run, as Oxnard running back Ray Caldera sprinted to 307 yards and four touchdowns in the Yellow Jackets' 41-21 rout.
The victory gives Oxnard the Pacific View League championship with a perfect 4-0 mark.
BIG KINGSBURG LINEMAN JOINING FRESNO STATE
Kingsburg High offensive lineman Isaiah Trevino had a senior night to remember.
The 6-foot-6, 330-pound senior shoved around the Selma Bears in the Vikings' 40-21victory in both teams' annual rivalry game. But before the contest, Trevino ended his recruiting process and announced on his senior night that he's joining Fresno State.
Trevino held other offers from Washington State, Arizona, Hawaii and Colorado State before deciding that the Bulldogs were the right fit.
It's the second time since 2012 that a high profile prospect from Kingsburg made his college choice on senior night. Former Viking defensive lineman Ryan Steele committed to Fresno State before his final regular season home game.