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by Mike Finnerty (firstname.lastname@example.org
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There was very little drama in Vista Del Lago's 44-0 win over Lincoln in Thursday night's opening round of the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III playoffs.
In frigid temperatures from Folsom High School, the host Eagles didn't miss a beat on offense. Averaging 44 points per game heading in to the game, that's exactly the number of points that the high octane Eagles offense hung on a Fighting Zebras defense.
"The win was great for our program," said Vista Del Lago coach Chris Jones. "I was really pleased with our effort and our physical play on defense. We held down a very good rushing attack and played solid defense all night."
Once again Vista Del Lago sophomore quarterback Matt Jimison looked like a composed veteran tossing a pair of touchdown passes, and rushing for another.
Jimison ran for a three-yard score in the first quarter, but Jimison took to the air in the second quarter connecting on a 15-yard touchdown pass to Brad Rittenhouse, and a nine-yarder to Colin McCargo.
"Matt played very well," said Jones. "He is still young and he made his first play-off start. That is a big step in his maturation process. He is playing very well and I thought was terrific on the field. We need to help him out by catching the ball. We like playing with a good tempo and that is something that really helps Matt."
The Eagles' defense not only delivered a shutout, but they scored two touchdowns.
In the second quarter, Chris Grunsky blocked a Lincoln punt, scooped up the loose ball, and ran it in for a 10-yard score. In the second half, Andrew Schantz had an eight-yard interception for a touchdown, helping to make it a long night for Lincoln.
In the second half, Josh Pfeffer added a 50-yard touchdown run, and Andrew Mintz added a 28-yard field goal.
Vista Del Lago opened the season with a 42-6 loss to the Division I Oak Ridge Trojans, but since that time the Eagles have won 10 straight games, including a Sierra Valley Conference title.
The win over Lincoln was Vista Del Lago's second playoff win in the school's five year history, but coming in as the No. 2 seed in the Division III bracket, Vista Del Lago's is a legitimate section title contender.
Next up for the Eagles will be a round two match up against the winner of Saturday's El Camino at Sacramento round one playoff game.