Cordova Football Too Much for Union Mine

Rancho Cordova, CA  |  By Mike Bush
  Share this pic with friends!

Alvin Banks rips through for a big gain. Photo by Rick Sloan.

  Share this pic with friends!

Sanders tries a keeper. Photo by Rick Sloan

RANCHO CORDOVA, CA (MPG) – There is more than one way to find the end zone.

In its second Sierra Valley Conference game at Lancer Stadium on Oct. 13th, the Cordova High School football team showed the homecoming crowd how it can score in different formations against Union Mine. That led to a 48-6 win over the visiting Diamondbacks.

Cordova (2-0 in the SVC, 5-2) scored three touchdowns in the first quarter for a 22-0 lead – but only one was on offense. After the Lancers went three and out on their first offensive drive, Union Mine (0-2 in the SVC, 2-5) had the ball. But Lancer defensive back Alvin Banks has an interception and returned it 48 yards for a touchdown.

“Our defense is peaking at the right time,” said Cordova head coach Darren Nill.

The Lancers scored their second touchdown also on special teams. After Union Mine punted after its second possession, Cordova running back Raymond Fite took the Diamondbacks’ punt return and rushed it back for another score for a 15-0 score.

“We knew we had too much speed for them,” Nill said. “We were going to try to exploit that every chance we got.”

The Lancers added another touchdown before the opening quarter was done for the 22-0 lead.

In the second quarter, Cordova continued its scoring attack on the D’Backs’ defense, with three more touchdowns that led to a 41-0 halftime lead. Lancer quarterback Johnele Sanders led the way, as he threw two touchdowns in the first half, and completed 9-of-14 passes for 160 yards. He also rushed for 102 yards and scored another TD on the ground for three combined in the game.

Banks, a wide receiver, also had a big game for the Lancers. He hauled in 154 yards receiving on seven receptions. Fite had 39 yards rushing on four carries, Clifford Bright 5-40 and Chase Allen 4-29.

One of the pluses for the Lancers, in the second half after the D’Backs asked for a running clock, was playing everyone to cap off the homecoming victory. Most of the fourth quarter included playing time for the two girls on the football squad; wide receiver and defensive backs Kiran Pooni and Ajay Williams, who had returned some kickoffs for the Lancers this season.

“They got a ton of playing time,” said Nill of Pooni and Williams.

On defense, Lancer outside linebackers Yusef Pugh had six tackles in the contest and Elijah Jenkins and Ryan McMoore four each.

Cordova hits the road to Placerville for a tougher SVC game on Friday. El Dorado (2-0 in the SVC, 5-2) welcomes the Lancers. The winner of this game will have an inside track toward winning the conference title.

“Big game,” said Nill of the upcoming game. “It’s going to be a great night of football.”