Carson CA— It looked good early for Oceanside in the CIF Division I Championship game at the StubHub Center in Carson, Friday night but things went sour fast for the Pirates.
Oceanside drove 68 yards on their opening possession capped with a eight yard touchdown run by Matt Romero, 8:01 left in the first quarter.
The Folsom Bulldogs matched that drive with an 80 yard drive of their own ending with a QB keeper for University of Washington bound, Jake Browning, 7-7 with 4:39 left in the quarter.
From there it was all Folsom. The Bulldogs rattled off 34 unanswered points taking a 41-7 lead to the locker room at the half. The Bulldogs scored more points in the first half than Oceanside had allowed any team in an entire game this season.
Jake Browning was 16 of 20 for 208 yards and three touchdowns in the first half. The Oceanside defense was hampered with the loss of two linebacker stand-outs, Tommy Woo and Marcus Lau young due to injuries.
The Folsom defense was impressive keeping the Pirates to minus 18 yards rushing in the first half and giving their offense a short field to play on. Twice, early in the game, The Bulldogs started possessions inside the Oceanside 22 yard-line.
The Pirates began a second quarter possession at their 20 yard line and three plays later they were back on their own two. The punt from their own end-zone went 13 yards setting up the short field for Browning to work with. On the next possession, a fumble by Matt Romero gave the ball back to Folsom inside the Oceanside 20 yard line.
When the Bulldogs did have to go the distance, they did it quickly. With just over a minute to play in the first half and the score 34-7, the Bulldogs pulled a fake reverse pitch and toss with a spectacular catch by Tre Green at the Oceanside 8 yard line. The Bulldogs scored two plays later giving them the 34 point lead at the break.
The Bulldogs didn’t slow down in the second half. The Folsom offense went 80 yards in three plays giving them a 48-7 lead with 1:11 gone in the third quarter.
The games final play was indicative of the entire contest. Romero, under pressure, coughed up the ball and the Bulldogs Bailey Laolagi picked it up and scampered 62 yards for the touchdown making the final score 68-7.
An amazing statistic for the Bulldogs, the state title game was their 16th consecutive “running clock” victory of the season. The running clock is where the official time continues to run regardless of what happens on the field and goes into effect when a teams lead is deemed insurmountable.
State Champions, the Folsom Bulldogs end the season 16-0 while the Oceanside Pirates finish at 14-1. It was a terrific season for the state runner-up Pirates, a team that wasn’t even favored to win the San Diego Section let alone make it to the state title game.
Side note: Making a long ride home longer for the large contingent of Oceanside fans attending the game, drivers found the south-bound 405 closed at the 605 freeway with few detour signs to guide unsuspecting drivers around the closure. Then, after navigating around the closure of the 405 and getting up to speed on the 5 freeway, drivers found themselves facing another detour. Catrans had shut down Interstate 5 at the Ortega Highway. A long night indeed.