GALT — Turning seven Galt turnovers into touchdowns, El Dorado buried the host Warriors 65-20 to close the Sierra Valley Conference season.
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Friday’s formula was simple: Galt put it on the ground, the Cougars recovered, the Cougars scored. A combination of El Dorado hits and Warrior mishandles added up to the Cougars’ biggest win of the year and only league victory.
“I’m real happy for the Seniors — we started last January with 18 Seniors who were dedicated and I’m happy we sent them off with a win,” El Dorado coach Joe Volek said. “The first five weeks it felt like the ball bounced the wrong way but tonight it bounced our way.”
Derek Delfino scored three touchdowns — two on the ground, one through the air; Clayton Van Duyn did the opposite — two via receptions from quarterback Nick Bonniksen and one sweep around the end; Caleb Melton and Garrett Scalaro caught touchdowns and Alex Stark ran one in.
Overall, Bonniksen completed 18 passes for 189 yards and five touchdowns and El Dorado constantly cashed in on some mis-direction run plays featuring Delfino.
“The line blocked really well, our quarterback threw perfectly … everyone clicked,” said Delfino who ran for 131 yards on 14 carries. “On the touchdowns it felt like I walked in.”
Friday’s game was tight early. After Bonniksen found Van Duyn for a 34-yard catch-and-run score and Scalaro behind the defense for another six points, the Cougars clung to a 13-12 lead with 9:37 left in the second quarter before Galt’s turnover sieve opened up.
The Warriors fumbled on three consecutive second-quarter snaps. When the dust settled, El Dorado led by 22 before taking a 41-12 lead to the locker room at halftime.
“Our D-Line got there to cause fumbles and we hopped on them,” said Cougar senior Andrew Montex who recovered one fumble after Jeremiah Romero jarred the ball loose. “We played like a family … I’m really going to miss it.”
Van Duyn caught eight passes for 98 yards. Sam McCrea was a perfect 8-for-8 on extra points along with adding a third-quarter field goal. Colby Harrington was a menace on special teams and recovered two fumbles. El Dorado finished 3-7.