There’s a logjam at the top of the Tri-River Athletic Conference with one week remaining in the regular season.
The Central Section’s No. 6-ranked Buchanan (6-3, 3-1), fueled by the rushing attack of Chibuikem Dunu and Trevor Ervin, came back to win 37-25 over host Clovis East (3-6, 0-4) at Lamonica Stadium on Friday and help force a three-team tie for first with fourth-ranked Clovis and No. 5 Clovis North.
Buchanan hosts Clovis North in a regular-season finale.
Dunu ran for two first-half touchdowns and Ervin added his own pair after halftime. Ervin finished with a game-high 228 yards on 23 carries; Dunu added 104 on 19.
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The defense got into the act just before halftime, tackling Clovis East quarterback Trey Semien in the end zone for a safety.
Marcus Washington led the Timberwolves with 149 yards rushing and two touchdowns on 22 carries and caught a 10-yard TD pass from Semien for a 13-0 lead in the first quarter. Semien finished 22-of-35 passing for 307 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions.
Khalil Harshaw scored two second-half touchdowns to help the Golden Eagles (5-3, 2-2) pull away from the Grizzlies (2-7, 1-3) in a TRAC game Thursday.
Adrian Martinez ran for a touchdown and threw an 11-yard scoring strike to Uriah Alers in the first half for Clovis West, which also received a touchdown reception from Caleb Kelly on a double pass.
The ninth-ranked Tigers did their part to set up a second straight Milk Can game showdown next week to decide the West Yosemite League football title.
Allen Perryman scored three touchdowns for Lemoore (7-2, 5-0) heading into their annual rivalry game against Hanford after arriving undefeated on the season last year.
The No. 11 Bullpups (9-0) are also 5-0 in the WYL. They were idle Friday.
Perryman got Lemoore rolling in the second quarter with a 70-yard touchdown. The Tigers, winners of six straight, also received a short scoring run from Logan Ahlin and a punt returned for a score by Roger Wilson.
The Redskins (9-0, 4-0) had little trouble without star running back Romello Harris (in uniform, but did not play after suffering a sprained knee last week against Porterville), as sophomore Kazmeir Allen stepped up big – pounding the Hawks’ defense for 330 yards rushing on 37 carries and three touchdowns.
Tulare’s victory sets up an EYL championship showdown against crosstown rival Tulare Western next week at Bob Mathias Stadium.
Josh Guerrero completed 18 of 27 passes for 292 yards and four TDs, three to Emoryie Edwards, who had 102 yards receiving on seven catches. Elijah Dailey hauled in six for a game-high 160 yards and one touchdown – a 95-yard strike from Guerrero. In all, the Redskins pounded Mission Oak for 633 yards of total offense.
The score was tied 21-21 after one quarter before Guerrero put his team ahead with three second-quarter TD passes for a 41-27 halftime lead.
Mission Oak (3-6, 1-3) quarterback Trey McJunkin was 11-of-24 passing for 260 yards to go with three TDs and one interception. He also caught a 9-yard TD pass from Jaden Enriquez in the first quarter. Jeffrey DeMacablin led Hawks rushers with 85 yards on seven carries.
Harris, a senior, has 7,311 career rushing yards and still needs 720 to pass former Mendota star Edgar Segura (8,029) for the section career rushing record.
The Mustangs (6-3, 4-0) prevailed over the Marauders (2-7, 1-3) at Rankin Stadium, pulling away from a 7-7 tie entering the fourth quarter for their fourth straight win.
Isaiah Jones scored five touchdowns Thursday to lead the Panthers (3-6, 2-2) over the Tigers (2-7, 0-4) in the EYL.
Jones broke loose for a 65-yard scoring run in the second quarter and a 64-yarder in the third.
Joey Ruiz had touchdowns rushing and receiving, while Michael Alvarez threw two touchdown passes to lead the Panthers (7-2, 2-2) over the Stallions (4-5, 0-4) in the County/Metro Athletic Conference.
Chris Paz returned a fumble for a score and Demarcus Wilson returned from an injury to rush for a touchdown for Memorial.
Madera South played without star quarterback Jonah Johnson, out with a concussion.
The Tigers (4-5, 3-1) won back-to-back games for the first time this season, routing the Coyotes (4-4, 0-4) in a CMAC game at Madera Memorial Stadium.
Anthony Perez’s 1-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter put the Monarchs ahead of the Vikings for good in the Central Sequoia League game.
Ryan Buchanan’s 24-yard field goal later in the fourth provided the final points for Exeter (6-3, 1-2), which trailed 27-7 in the second quarter. Kingsburg fell to 5-4 and 1-2.
The Monarchs received 325 yards passing and two touchdowns from Alec Trujillo, and 150 yards rushing and two touchdowns from Anthony Torres.
Khory Day accounted for six touchdowns while powering the Warriors (8-1, 4-0) to at least a share of the North Yosemite League championship with a victory over the Highlanders (4-5, 1-3) on Thursday.
Fresno, also ranked No. 2 in Division II, can wrap up the title outright with a victory over Roosevelt at Sunnyside.
Day rushed for three touchdowns and passed for three scores – two to Lee Major and one to Nyric Hinton.
Hinton rushed 23 times for 229 yards and one other touchdown.
Ben McCabe’s pick-six touchdown sparked the Pirates (3-5, 3-1), who scored 24 unanswered points in a comeback victory against the Patriots (1-8, 1-3) in the NYL.
McCabe returned his interception 26 yards for a score and Keanu Garcia caught the conversion pass to make it 10-10 at halftime. Garcia added a 6-yard scoring run in the third quarter and Argeny Cruz iced it with 26-yard touchdown run in the fourth. Garcia finished with 137 rushing yards.
Adam Martinez ran in three touchdowns as the Panthers blanked the Badgers (0-8, 0-4) to secure at least a share of the North Sequoia League title.
Martinez led Washington (6-3, 4-0), ranked third in D-IV, with eight carries for 69 yards rushing. Ashanti Ross was 7-of-9 passing for 191 yards, including a 26-yard TD strike to Carlos Silva that helped the Panthers to a 35-0 lead at the half.
Jesse DeLaCruz led Yosemite with 60 yards rushing on 14 attempts. Tristan Eames was 10 of 20 passing for 51 yards and one interception.
The Panthers would capture the NSL title outright with a win next weekend over visiting Kerman (5-3, 3-1).
CJ Palma ran for two touchdowns and Sean Chambers ran for another and also passed for a score to lead the Lions to their third straight NSL victory.
Chambers finished with 99 yards rushing and 79 passing for Kerman (6-3, 2-2), which scored 21 straight points between the second and third quarters.
Liberty (6-3, 2-2), which dropped its second straight game, got a touchdown run from Chad Wallace and a TD catch by Danny Cervantes on a pass from Markie Brandt, who also threw two interceptions.
The Chieftains may have scored first on the road, but Chowchilla didn’t hesitate in defending the home turf, scoring 49 unanswered points to keep Sierra (1-7, 0-4) winless in the NSL.
Anthony Stewart ran in touchdowns of 47 and 51 yards to lead Chowchilla (7-2, 3-1). He had 10 carries for 158 yards.
Sierra struggled to control the ball, losing five turnovers, including four interceptions by Tristan Wilson. Chowchilla’s Jayson Cantrell returned one of those picks for an 11-yard TD.
Raymond Ramirez scored with 4:14 left to make it a two score game, and Hugo Mendez came up with an interception with 2:12 left to help the Redcats (6-2, 3-0) hold off the Cowboys (2-7, 1-2) and set up a showdown for the West Sequoia League title next week at Caruthers.
Matt Kahaian accounted for Fowler’s two other touchdowns, one on a run and another on a pass to Victorio Jimenez.
Alex Puga and Imanol Arredondo each ran in three touchdowns as the Blue Raiders (6-3, 3-0) routed the visiting Cardinals (2-7, 1-2) in the WSL.
Puga finished with 284 yards on 17 carries and Arredondo had 151 on 14 carries. Caruthers’ Dorian Arrelano added a 48-yard pick-six in the second quarter.
Gary Huerta got Orosi’s only score on a 1-yard rush in the first quarter.
The Broncos (5-4, 4-0) scored two third-quarter touchdowns to break a 14-14 tie and escape an upset bid by the Horned Toads (0-8, 0-4) while clinching at least part of the West Sierra League title.
Dos Palos, ranked No. 3 in D-V and led by first-year coach Rob Calvert, closes next week at Avenal.
▪ Avenal (5-4, 2-2) fell 26-18 at Firebaugh (5-4, 3-1). In Mendota, the host Aztecs beat Tranquillity 41-14.