LODI — Capitalizing on three early interceptions, host Tokay High built a big first-half lead and never looked back in a 49-7 nonleague victory over El Dorado at Lodi’s Grape Bowl Friday night.
Tigers wide receiver Gary Norwood caught two touchdown passes and returned a pick off for another while fullback Bryson Schreiner added three scores for Tokay (2-0). The Cougars (1-1) avoided the shutout late in the fourth quarter when quarterback Bradley Schmidt rolled out and ran in from 20 yards out with Sam McCrea adding the extra point.
Turnovers killed El Dorado. Norwoood’s pick and one by Clark Hunter were the result of downfield throws that either deflected or tipped up and off of the intended targets. The third bounced up and off a Cougars’ helmet.
The Tigers led 35-0 at halftime and added two quick scores in the third quarter to put the game out of reach. Tokay kicker Bailey Smith tied a school record with seven point-after kicks.
Though Nick Thomas (8 tackles), Donovan Mayer (5), Jeremiah Romero (5), Gage Raley (three tackles, fumble recovery), Gavin Zirbel (4), Nathan Wheeler (4) and Bryce Buford (3) led the defense, El Dorado did have its share of missed tackles and difficulty stopping Schreiner.
Offensively, Derek Delfino rushed 14 times for 62 yards and caught another five passes for 63 from the Schmidt-Nick Bonniksen quarterback-combo the Cougars utilized. Clayton Van Duyn hauled in five receptions for 29 yards and had some good kickoff returns while Riley Beckett pulled in a 28-yard catch up the sideline in the fourth quarter.
In junior varsity action, a late fourth-down stop by the El Dorado defense preserved a 14-7 victory. The Cougars led 8-7 before tacking on six more on Tyler Clanin’s touchdown run. Thursday, the Cougars freshmen squad rallied from a 19-7 to take the lead but fell 31-30 to the Tigers.