High School Sports

RUDI BURTSCHI

Most of Rudi Burtschi's energy was expended on defense the first five weeks of the season, but the senior's been staying busy on both sides of the ball the last two weeks.

He ran for 154 yards and three touchdowns two weeks ago, then produced a tough 64 yards and scored two TDs in last week's 21-20 victory over Manteca -- snapping the Buffaloes' 26-game win streak. He also had a dozen tackles, including two for losses, and foiled Manteca's two-point attempt in the final minutes.

A state champion wrestler, Burtschi says that sport has helped him build up stamina. Oakdale coach Trent Merzon agrees: "There are no tougher athletes than wrestlers. Wrestlers know how to compete. They are relentless and they have zero fear."

After beginning his career as a lineman, "we stood him up this year because we did not want opponents to be able to stay away from him," Merzon said.

-- RICHARD T. ESTRADA

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