Just when it seemed an opponent had found a way to slow down Tulare Union High’s mighty offense, the Tribe made halftime adjustments that put it back on track.
Top-seeded Tulare Union remained perfect on the season at 13-0 and captured the Central Section Division II football championship after defeating No. 2 Dinuba 49-21 on Friday night at Bob Mathias Stadium.
The Emperors held the Tribe to two touchdowns and owned a 14-13 lead at halftime.
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But Tulare Union had been there before with Dinuba – back on Sept. 29 when the Emperors also led by one point midway through the third quarter only for the Tribe to storm back for a 69-47 victory.
Friday played out in similar fashion.
Tulare Union star running back Kazmeir Allen scored three of his four touchdowns after the break, including the first touchdown of the second half.
Then after Dinuba tied it 21-21 on Alek Marroquin’s 24-yard touchdown run, Tribe quarterback Nathan Lamb passed for two TDs.
First, Lamb hit Darius Baker for the go-ahead touchdown. Then Lamb connected with Bryson Allen for a 64-yard score.
Allen, who earlier this week announced his top college choices (Fresno State, San Diego State, Wisconsin, Cal, USC, Arizona State), provided the finishing touches on touchdown runs from 26 and 91 yards.
Allen has 120 career touchdowns, breaking Dominique Dorsey’s Tulare career mark of 118 touchdowns, according to Central Section historian Bob Barnett.
Allen also passed Dorsey (1998-2000) and former Dos Palos star Kenny James (1999-2001), to move to No. 2 all-time in Central Section scoring.
Tulare Union is averaging a section-best 56.2 points per game.
The Tribe won its first section title since 2008 and the school’s fifth championship overall. Dinuba (11-2) finished section runner-up for the fourth time in the past six seasons.
Both of the Emperors’ losses this season came against the Tribe.
Tulare Union now awaits a date in the state playoffs. Regional matchups will be announced Dec. 3.