Highlights from some of the best Week 9 Central Section football games. Check Fresnobee.com every week during the season for scores and details from the action.
Andy Phimmavong threw one touchdown pass and ran for another Friday night to help Sunnyside High remain unbeaten in the County/Metro Athletic Conference with a 26-16 victory over visiting Sanger.
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The Wildcats (6-3, 4-0) clinched at least a tie for the CMAC championship and have beaten both second-place teams, Memorial and Edison. Sunnyside, which has won six straight games, finishes the regular season next week against Bullard.
John Pinedo led Sanger (4-5, 0-4) with 67 rushing yards, including an 8-yard touchdown that brought the Apaches to within 20-16.
Jerrold Turner clinched the game for Sunnyside in the fourth quarter by returning an interception 28 yards for a touchdown.
The visiting Tigers (3-6, 3-1) kept their hopes alive for a piece of the CMAC title by beating the Coyotes (3-6, 0-4), who suffered a missed extra point and a fumble at the 1-yard line in the fourth quarter.
Edison sophomore Khari Magee was 13 for 20 for 194 yards and four touchdowns, two to Terrell Green. Jeremy Williamson made his one carry of the night pay for the Tigers, a 38-yarder for the go-ahead touchdown. And Vadal McDonald made all five of his extra-point kicks. He also had five catches for 72 yards and a score.
The Coyotes totaled 345 yards rushing led by Eric Mendoza (31 carries for 119 yards and three scores).
The 10th-ranked Cougars rallied in the fourth quarter and now find themselves one victory away from a Tri-River Athletic Conference championship.
Standing in the way next week is Clovis West, which should come in No. 1 after this week's top-ranked Centennial was bumped off by Liberty-Bakersfield.
Donell Vercher's 2-yard run in the fourth quarter was the winner for the Cougars (6-3, 3-1). That came after Chris Mariscal's 80-yard pass to Jon Pulido had sent the No. 12 Broncos (3-6, 1-3) ahead 21-17.
Mariscal completed 26 of 39 passes for 354 yards and two touchdowns, including a 10-yarder to Alec Mechikoff. Pulido caught 11 passes for 203 yards.
That helped offset a big night from Clovis' Andrew Smith, who passed for 236 yards, including a 78-yard scoring play to Anthony Arcelus.
Vercher also had a 3-yard scoring run and Arcelus kicked a 25-yard field goal.
The No. 9 Bears (6-2, 2-2 TRAC) compounded the No. 15 Timberwolves' (3-6, 0-4) spiral by charging to a 21-7 lead in the first quarter.
Bears quarterback Seth Moranda, who was averaging 190 yards per game, threw just nine times and completed four for 20 yards.
That left it to Buchanan's ground game and the special teams to get it done.
Moranda opened the scoring with a 36-yard run and the defense got into the act when Rommel DeLaCruz returned a fumble 60 yards for touchdown. Kenny Castle also had a 14-yard scoring run in the first quarter.
Khary Coleman scored for Clovis East on a 65-yard run, but the Timberwolves didn't score again until George Macias' 2-yard run with 2 seconds left in the game.
Brian Alvarado's outstanding overall game helped Coalinga High upset host Exeter 42-28 Friday night, locking up at least a piece of the Central Sequoia League title for the Horned Toads.
Coalinga, which has a bye next week, finished the regular season 8-2 overall and 5-1 in the CSL.
Exeter (7-2, 4-1), which had joined The Bee's overall Central Section rankings at No. 20 and was in contention for a state bowl bid, now must win next week at Dinuba to join Coalinga in a CSL title tie. Kingsburg, which had a bye Friday, can also tie for the title if it beats rival Selma next week.
Alvarado was a three-way star. The section rushing leader had 181 yards and three touchdowns on 36 carries; had an interception, fumble recovery and sack on defense; and punted five times for a 35-yard average.
Coalinga rallied from a 21-7 halftime deficit, scoring three straight touchdowns to take the lead for good. Alvarado's 15-yard interception return to the 1 set up quarterback Fabian Andrade's second 1-yard sneak that tied it, and Alvarado scored just before the end of the third quarter to put Coalinga ahead to stay.
Andrade threw a 13-yard TD pass to Austin Vierhus early in the fourth quarter, and two Alvarado scores sandwiched Trevor Knox's 64-yard TD run for Exeter.
Zach Vernon, who completed 14 of 24 passes for 244 yards, kept the Monarchs in it with two touchdown passes: 13 yards to Jacob Sertich and 47 yards to Alex Valencia. Knox had nine carries for 96 yards and two TDs.
Chris Smith scored two touchdowns and passed for another to help the Pioneers (5-4, 4-1 West Yosemite League) beat the host Trailblazers (2-7, 1-4) in Visalia.
Mt. Whitney and Redwood (6-3, 4-1), which beat Hanford West 48-18 Friday, enter next week's 56th Cowhide Game on a roll. Redwood won last year's Cowhide 47-6.
Angel Wirth scored twice for Golden West, which finishes the season next week against El Diamante in the Battle for the Saddle.
Xavier Stephens, bottled up early, broke out for 153 yards and three touchdowns rushing to lift the No. 5 Redskins (8-1, 6-1) past their new city rivals at Bob Mathias Stadium.
The game was tied 7-7 before Tulare scored 42 straight points.
Redskins quarterback Oscar Reyes was 14 of 20 for 249 yards and three scores.
For Mission Oak (2-7, 2-5), Dhmarea Bradley ran 65 yards for a first-quarter touchdown and threw a fourth-quarter TD. He rushed 13 times for 134 yards.
Donald Phelps scored four touchdowns as the Panthers (7-2, 4-0) beat the visiting Badgers (4-5, 3-1) in Easton and clinch at least a tie for the North Sequoia League title.
Washington can close out an undefeated league season when it plays next week at Kerman.
Phelps scored on a 49-yard run just 1:39 into the game. His second rushing TD made it 14-0 before Brad Rolff found John Di Tomaso for a 12-yard score for Yosemite.
The Panthers answered on the next play from scrimmage, a 68-yard touchdown pass from Sean Stell to Phelps.
Rolff's 7-yard TD pass to Cory Skerce on fourth-and-goal got Yosemite close again, but Washington iced it on TDs by Phelps and Yafett Thomas.
Brandon Beaton and Devin Gaines each ran for two touchdowns to power the visiting Redskins (6-3, 2-2) in the NSL.
Beaton rushed 17 times for 117 yards and scored on dashes of 24 and 18 yards. Gaines had 104 yards on only four carries. His scoring runs were of 22 and 70 yards.
Sierra (2-7, 0-4) finally broke through in the fourth quarter on Gavin Hamilton's 3-yard run and Jake Dunn's 3-yard pass to Sean Ryan.
Anthony Baldwin had two scoring runs and the Hawks (5-4, 2-2 NSL) scored in every quarter to win going away at home.
Christopher Montero passed for 160 yards and a touchdown for the Lions (4-5, 1-3) but he was intercepted twice.
Liberty's Dylan Jackson and Brandon Silva also added short scoring runs.
The game at Avenal was called at halftime because of safety issues, handing Dos Palos its 600th victory in the program's 87-year history.
The injury-plagued Buccaneers were down to 12 healthy players, coach Chris Luttrel said, so he asked that the West Sierra League game be stopped. It's not known whether it will be recorded as a final score or a forfeit for Avenal (0-9, 0-4).
With the score getting out of hand, officials began running the clock without stopping it about six minutes into the first quarter.
Ryan Yriarte and Jerry Warren each returned interceptions for touchdowns for the Broncos (8-1, 3-0). Yriarte passed for 68 yards and one touchdown, Kevin Schofield ran twice for 30 yards and two scores, and Miguel Leal and David Quiroz each had touchdown runs.
Juan Cortez passed for five touchdowns, three of them to Ryan Luna, as the host Panthers (6-3) rolled in a nonleague game.
Cortez finished with 271 passing yards on just seven completions, and Luna had four receptions for 119 yards. Luna also scored on an interception return.
Corcoran led 48-0 at halftime before Parlier (2-7) finally cracked the scoreboard in the third quarter.
Chris Brown rushed for 146 yards and three touchdowns and Jordan Stallworth added 126 rushing yards as the No. 14 Panthers (7-2, 3-1 County/Metro Athletic Conference) held on despite a scoreless second half.
Stallworth also ended Bullard's last-gasp comeback with an interception at midfield with 1:30 remaining.
Demetrius Warren rushed 31 times for 208 yards for Bullard (3-6, 2-2), including touchdowns of 52 and 1 yard.
Juan Sanchez completed 11 of 16 passes for 175 yards and two second-half touchdowns to rally the Warriors (2-7, 2-2) past the visiting Stallions (2-7, 2-2) in the North Yosemite League.
With Fresno down 13-12, Sanchez found Andrew Furlong on a 24-yard pass for the go-ahead touchdown, then hooked up with Javier Corona from 10-yards out to make it a 12-point margin.
Manolo Pineda-Ibarra's 1-yard run in the fourth quarter for Madera South closed the scoring.
The 16th-ranked Patriots drove 64 yards in 57 seconds for the winning touchdown to shock the top-ranked Golden Hawks, throwing the Division I playoff bracket askew.
Carson Moyer caught a 15-yard touchdown pass from Kody Renz on fourth down with 4 seconds left to lift Liberty.
HIGHLIGHTS FROM THURSDAY
Outgoing Hoover coach Pat Plummer was not only presented a letterman's jacket, the Patriots delivered a 35-6 North Yosemite League win over McLane for Hoover's first conference football title in 11 years. Anthony Yancy caught two touchdown passes, Kevin Ivy returned a punt 70 yards for a score and fullback/linebacker Kenny Graves contributed a strong two-way performance for the Patriots.
Victor Garcia ran for two touchdowns and threw another to Elijah Brown as the Rough Riders routed the Pirates in an NYL game Thursday.
Brown and Vincent Barron each had two interceptions as Roosevelt (6-3, 2-2) handed Reedley (4-5, 1-3) its fifth loss in six games.
Jacob Newman returned an onside kick 47 yards for a clinching touchdown with 1:58 to play and the No. 6 Miners stopped the Tigers from scoring after a first-and-goal at the 5-yard line in the final minute for a West Yosemite League victory Thursday.
Lemoore (5-4, 2-3) scored on its first possession before El Diamante (8-1, 5-0) pulled away with 21 straight points highlighted by two Aaron Sing touchdowns. But the Tigers pulled within a score late in the game after Anthony Rosa caught a deflected pass as he fell down in the end zone for a touchdown that made it 21-14.