The Gregori High football players looked like a yellow wave Friday night. They started slowly and gained momentum until no one, including the Grace Davis Spartans, stood in their path.
Gregori (5-1 2-0), picked to place second behind Downey in the Modesto Metro Conference this season, became an official contender with an impressive 45-7 throttling over the Spartans at home at Don Lanphear Stadium.
“It was nice to see us clicking,” Gregori coach Jason McCoy said. “I feel we took some positive strides the last two weeks. I think we can compete with anybody.”
The first quarter was scoreless and the final 5:56 was wound down by a running clock, so the Jaguars rolled through the game’s heart. Their Wing-T attack produced 290 yards, 150 of them by the fleet Demetrius Vinson for two touchdowns.
His 61-yard burst past the Davis bench early in the second half vaulted the Jaguars’ lead to 31-7, a signal to all that this would be their night.
“It was a belly-give and I followed my guy and cut it in,” Vinson said. “I saw a lot of green grass.”
Quarterback Cam Calton, one of several talented juniors for the Jaguars, performed almost without error. He completed 7 of 8 passes for 128 yards and touchdown tosses to Matt Vargas, Jonathan Duggan and Hagan O’Brien.
Calton’s 27-yard scoring pass to Vargas, a fourth-down-and-2 throw for the game’s first TD, no doubt will be enjoyed by the Jaguars when they review the game. The quarterback pump-faked and unloaded to Vargas, who sped past the coverage for the catch in the end zone.
Davis (4-2, 0-2), coming off a tough loss to Enochs and a bye, missed a chance for an early lead. The Spartans used the arm of quarterback Zach Magana to march to the Gregori 10. Then they gained only a single yard in four tries.
From there, Magana struggled against the physical Gregori defense. He was sacked four times and threw three second-half interceptions, two to James Allen. Gregori all but shut down the Davis rushing attack and outgained the Spartans 418 yards to 142.
Davis avoided a shutout via a 97-yard kickoff return by Talolo Limu-Jones during the third quarter.
“They’re a lot better than us up front. We came out flat and they didn’t,” Davis coach Tim Garcia said. “We just didn’t play very well and Gregori deserved to win.”
A week ago, Gregori trailed Beyer by a touchdown before drawing even and winning in overtime. Clearly, the Jaguars are racing downwind, going into their showdown next week against defending MMC champion Modesto.
“To be the best, you must beat the best,” McCoy said.