Week Zero definitely provided some twists and turns on the area football landscape that could potentially have some long-term repercussions when it comes time for playoff seeding.
Here are some quick peaks at this week’s Gold Country matchups:
JESUIT (10-3 LAST YEAR) AT FOLSOM (0-1), 7 P.M.
Prairie City Stadium will be rocking as the Marauder red invades the blue turf of Folsom, who fell 14-0 at national power De La Salle last week in Concord. Widely considered the top two teams in the Sacramento area, this will undoubtedly be the game to watch this week as each fields national recruits. Folsom brothers Joe (committed to Clemson) and Daniyel Ngata (interest from the Pac-12 and Big 10) are electric when being fed by QB Kaiden Bennett (interest from Utah, Sacramento State and UC Davis to name a few). Jesuit counters with linebacker Laiatu Latu, who’s drawn interest from several Pac-12 schools, and cornerback Isaiah Rutherford, who’s been recruited by Notre Dame, LSU and Alabama, among many others.
GRANITE BAY (0-1) AT DAMONTE RANCH, RENO (11-1 LAST YEAR), 7 P.M.
OK, raise your hand if you had the Grizzlies scoring just three points at home against Monte Vista last week. Didn’t think so. Jeff Evans’ squad dug themselves a hole last Friday, and it won’t get much easier to climb out in Week 1, as an injury-riddled Granite Bay travels to Reno to play Damonte Ranch, the No. 4 team in the state of Nevada. The Grizzlies then play at Jesuit Aug. 31 and at home against Vacaville Sept. 7 before Sierra Foothill League play begins Sept. 14.
LINCOLN (0-1) AT ANTELOPE (1-0), 7 P.M.
The Zebras could not contain an always-strong Oak Ridge team out of the SFL that twice picked off Lincoln quarterback Tommy Turner – once for a touchdown – in a 56-20 opening-week loss. But credit head coach Chris Bean for scheduling another tough opponent this week in Antelope – who knocked off another SFL team, Rocklin, on a last-second field goal by Ben Moreno – as the Zebras try to steal a road win before their bye week.
VACAVILLE (0-1) AT OAK RIDGE (1-0), 7 P.M.
This matchup always means something extra to Trojans’ head coach Eric Cavaliere, who attended Vacaville High. Oak Ridge, coming off a 56-20 victory at Lincoln last week behind a 21-for-24, 268-yard, 3-TD performance from QB Matt Jenner, has defeated the Bulldogs in each of the past six seasons.
WOODCREEK (1-0) AT KENNEDY (3-7 LAST YEAR), 7 P.M.
The Timberwolves were impressive against Rio Americano last week in a 42-14 rout of the Raiders. Two of quarterback Carter Krupp’s five completions went to Matt Willford for scores. Krupp added 97 yards on the ground while Grant Dinger matched his QB’s rushing yardage and added two house calls for Woodcreek, whose first road test will be at Kennedy this week.
VALLEY CHRISTIAN (2-7 LAST YEAR) AT INCLINE (4-3 LAST YEAR), 7 P.M.
The Lions will begin their season Friday under first-year head coach Doug Williams, whose son, Drake, is a team captain and all-around glue guy in the middle of the field for Valley Christian Academy. VCA is looking for its first winning season since 2004, and it would be a big step in the right direction by starting 1-0 for the first time since 2010.
OAKMONT (1-0) AT ROSEVILLE (1-0), 7:15 P.M.
With each team coming off high-scoring, opening-week victories, the longest standing Roseville-area rivalry will rekindle at Hanson Field Friday night. Though the Vikings have lost 10 of their last 12 against Roseville, Oakmont head coach Tim Moore says you can throw out all the records when these two teams get together. Look for dynamic play from Oakmont’s Joseph Mintmier (three TDs in three different fashions against El Camino) and Roseville’s Terrell Williams (a pick-six and a 99-yard kickoff return TD against Bear Creek).
ROCKLIN (0-1) AT FRANKLIN (1-0) AT COSUMNES OAKS HIGH, 7:15 P.M.
The Thunder fell to a last-second field goal from Antelope while losing tight end Charlie McBride for the season, per sources, in the process with a foot injury. This week, Rocklin heads to Franklin, who beat McNair, 38-23, last week as the junior-heavy Wildcats displayed big-play capability. Running back Josiah Allen led the way with 194 yards and three TDs. The Thunder will try to avoid their first 0-2 start to a season since 2013.
HIRAM JOHNSON (0-1) AT WESTERN SIERRA (1-0), 7 P.M.
Greg Roeszler made a successful debut last week as the Wolves toppled Sierra Ridge for the second straight year, thanks to a monster night from senior quarterback Aiden Lucia, who threw six TDs, ran for one and had an interception. Western Sierra welcomes a Hiram Johnson team that hasn’t won more than two games in a season since 2012.
WHITNEY (5-5 LAST YEAR) AT PLACER (1-0), 7:30 P.M.
Placer picked up where it left off last year with a 48-21 trouncing of Pleasant Grove as Marshall Chapman and Hans Grassman combined for 255 yards and five touchdowns out of the backfield. Friday, the Hillmen welcome the Whitney Wildcats in their home-opener. Under new head coach Zac McNally, the Wildcats are making their first appearance of 2018 with a lot to prove after a 2017 postseason ban due to CIF sanctions. Joey Montoya goes for his 100th career win as head coach of the Hillmen.
DEL ORO (1-0) VS. OAK GROVE (6-5 LAST SEASON), BAY AREA HONOR BOWL AT ST. FRANCIS HIGH (MOUNTAIN VIEW), 4 P.M.
The Golden Eagles are loving the chemistry so far between quarterback Carson Jarratt and receiver Dawson Hurst, who corralled four of Jarratt’s five first-half touchdown passes against Amador Valley. Del Oro prepares for another intersectional battle with Central Coast power, Oak Grove, in the annual Bay Area Honor Bowl at St. Francis High School in Mountain View in a 4 p.m. kickoff.
COLFAX (1-0) AT WOODLAND (0-1) AT PIONEER HIGH, 7:30 P.M.
Congratulations to Colfax coach Tony Martello on winning his 200th career game last week against Golden Sierra. Alex Weir was efficient in going 12-of-16 for 193 yards and four TDs (two each to Jake Green and Colton Reeves). But now, the coach would say it’s time to focus on the next game. The Falcons travel to Woodland, who could only muster up a safety in a tough 48-2 drubbing from River Valley last Friday.
EL DORADO (0-1) AT BEAR RIVER (1-0), 7:30 P.M.
Perhaps Bear River’s biggest asset is the revolving door that they employ out of the backfield. Tre Maronic and Hunter Daniels play off of each other extremely well, and Calder Kunde and Colton Jenkins can each share snaps under center, leaving defenses guessing. The Bruins host El Dorado Friday, against whom they’ve been victorious in each of the past two seasons.
ESPARTO (1-9 LAST YEAR) AT FORESTHILL (1-0), 7 P.M.
The Wildfires showed resolve late in the season-opener against Turlock Christian last week. Elias Estrada ran a fourth-quarter interception 75 yards to the house to seal a 36-24 win for Foresthill. Head coach Steve Collier said that his offensive line was the “highest-graded position” on the field, allowing QB Kaiden Pennington to rush for a pair of scores. Foresthill hosts Esparto, who has gone just 3-17 over the past two seasons, in its home-opener Friday.
VISTA DEL LAGO (1-0) AT PONDEROSA (1-0), 7:15 P.M.
The Eagles have beaten the Bruins in four straight seasons. Vista came out with a strong turnaround in the second half of last week’s victory against Cordova. However, Mike Struebing’s flock won’t be able to start slowly on the road against Ponderosa, who last week ripped up River City, 64-6, at home.