The game to watch Friday night in Week 4 of the Central Section high school football season was clearly at Ratcliffe Stadium, where Clovis North and Edison went up and down the field all night.
Trenton Luera hit Brennon Lamee on a screen play for the 9-yard go-ahead touchdown and the defense got a fumble recovery by Cade Foraker with 47 seconds left as the Broncos, ranked No. 21 in The Bee’s section Top 25, beat Edison 41-40.
“I’m really proud how we played and how we finished,” Clovis North coach Mike Jacot said. ”We battled back and had a lot of opportunities and could’ve folded it up and didn’t. We had a tough road game at Sunnyside (last week, a 10-0 win) and to come out here in this environment and the way we battled and face adversity, I’m proud of my guys.”
The Broncos improved to 4-0 for the first time since 2012 and next face Ridgeview on Sept. 20 at Veterans Memorial Stadium.
It was the closest Edison has come to a win this season, but the Tigers are clearly the best 0-4 team in the section with losses to No. 1 Central, No. 8 Clovis West and No. 2 Buchanan.
Home cooking suits Bullard
No. 4 Bullard got three first-quarter touchdowns from Shalom Welch en route to a 63-10 victory over Pitman-Turlock in the first game on campus in Bullard’s 65-year history.
Knights co-coach Don Arax gathered his staff in the end zone for a group photo after the game.
“I have to admit I got a little emotional when I drove down the street and saw the stadium getting ready for the game,” said Arax, a member of Bullard’s Class of 1982 and the Knights’ coach since 2000.
“Wonderful experience and went off without a hitch. No reason why we can’t do this again.”
Bullard’s 2009 Central Section championship team was honored and other former players showed up to the game.
Buchanan wins 2-3 showdown
Running back Cade Uehling scored two touchdowns as No. 2 Buchanan held off No. 3 Liberty-Bakersfield 19-17 at Veterans Memorial Stadium on Thursday.
The Bears got revenge after the Patriots beat them in last season’s Central Section Division I semifinals, 24-23.
Buchanan played without star running back Kendall Milton (quad).
The Bears travel to Concord Sept. 20 to face state power De La Salle. Buchanan will get a bye the following week before hosting two-time defending section champion Central in a Tri-River Athletic Conference showdown at the Vet on Oct. 3.
Elsewhere in the Tri-River Athletic Conference, No. 1 Central defeated Paso Robles 49-0, No. 5 Clovis beat Salinas 52-28 and No. 10 Clovis East defeated Sunnyside 28-6, but No. 8 Clovis West lost to undefeated Valley Christian-San Jose 34-12.
Big South Valley matchups
There were two big games in the South Valley involving Top 25 teams.
One turned into a see-saw matchup.
The other involved a second-half surge that turned into a blowout.
No. 17 Redwood pulled off a 27-22 upset against No. 7 Tulare Western thanks to strong defense by the Rangers and two touchdown catches by Sam Olsen.
The Rangers held the Mustangs to just six points in the first half, then halted a couple of key drives in the final moments that allowed Redwood to hold onto the victory.
During one critical drive late in the fourth, Redwood stopped Tulare Western on fourth-and-1 from the Rangers 5.
That play was preceded by a controversial call in the end zone when a Tulare Western player appeared to catch what could’ve been the game-tying touchdown. But an official ruled the catch out of bounds.
Redwood (3-0) stays undefeated while handing Tulare Western (3-1) its first loss.
In the other big South Valley matchup Friday, No. 16 Hanford went off offensively during the second half to beat No. 20 Porterville 35-14.
The Bullpups (4-0) trailed 7-0 going into halftime but then erupted for five touchdowns. They also kept Porterville out of the end zone aside from one touchdown in the fourth quarter.
Washington Union on a roll
Washington Union beat Selma 42-32, its third game scoring 40-plus points. With Lawrence Stell and Jayden Green sharing the controls at quarterback, eight players had offensive touches led by Darius McCray’s 164 total yards. McCray is the son of former Panthers star LaDon McCray.
No. 12 Kingsburg is the only team to bottle up Washington Union, winning 19-13 in Week 2 on a late go-ahead touchdown.
Anthony Galaviz: 559-441-6042, agalaviz_TheBee