RC football puts away Diablo Valley in 2nd half

Reedley College Tigers improve to 3-1 on the season with 37-20 victory at Sal Gonzalez Field, Cason has big rushing game with 168 yards and 2 TDs

Reedley College football players are put through stretching drills prior to the Tigers’ intrasquad scrimmage on Aug. 12 at the RC practice field. (Danny Jimenez)
Reedley College football players are put through stretching drills prior to the Tigers’ intrasquad scrimmage on Aug. 12 at the RC practice field. (Danny Jimenez)
Will Goldbeck
Published September 25, 2023  • 
11:00 am

REEDLEY – Several Reedley College football players made their first listing on the stats list this season, making for a Saturday afternoon happy Homecoming for the Tigers (3-1) on Sept. 23 at Reedley High’s Sal Gonzalez Field.

First, freshman defensive back Ravel Cato (San Diego) had two first half interceptions to key a 37-20 victory over Diablo Valley College in the next to last non-conference game for RC this season. Cato’s picks came in a five-minute span that set up two Tiger touchdowns.

Freshman Contae Cason (Tampa, Fla.) was forced to carry a bigger load with the absence of fellow freshman running back Nick Osho (British Columbia), who missed the game due to an injury suffered in the double overtime loss at Sierra College. Cason responded with a season high 168 yards on 21 carries and two touchdowns against Diablo Valley.

Backup quarterback Jake Hamilton (Del Oro) got into the act by throwing a 31-yard touchdown pass to freshman wide receiver Karlos Grier (Washington Union) to give the 16th ranked Tigers a 20-7 lead. Less than two minutes later, the Vikings’ Jaden Price intercepted a Tiger pass and went 35 yards untouched to cut Reedley’s lead to 20-14 at halftime.

Key plays in a 62-yard Tiger scoring drive late in the third quarter were a 27-yard run by Cason and a 17-yard scamper by Ty Morgan (Golden West, Visalia). Those runs set up a 2-yard touchdown run by Paul Sharp (Clovis North), a 255-pounder who is listed on the RC roster as a defensive lineman.

“Contae Cason is playing his tail off,” Tigers head coach Rob Hartenfels said after the game. “We’ve got a really good offensive line. DJ Stevenson, his passing yards may not be as high but he was really, really good on third down, moving the football and making the rhythm of the offense good.”

The coach said that they are giving Hamilton an opportunity – much like they did with Stevenson last year behind Josh Magana – to develop and get reps as a freshman. “It had nothing to do with DJ’s play. We knew before the game we were going to give Jake some reps in the first half for development. And he went out there and threw a big time touchdown, which was huge.”

The coach added that Diablo Valley has a very good receiving corps. “In the second half, we said that we were going to put the ball in the D-linemen’s hands and put the pressure on. And the boys responded really well,” he said.

Hartenfels said that Osho could have been used on Saturday. “We just wanted to rest him up and get him ready for next Saturday (Sept. 30) in Santa Rosa and then in conference,” he said. “He could have (played). It’s just a small little nagging injury.”

Santa Rosa broke into the win column in a big way on Sept. 22, shutting out Chabot 31-0 in Hayward. The Bear Cub quarterback threw for over 500 yards in an earlier loss to Modesto. “It is going to be a dog fight,” said the coach of the upcoming matchup with Santa Rosa.

RC volleyball collects first conference win

Last season’s Reedley College women’s volleyball team didn’t record its first conference win until late in the season.

But on Friday night, Sept. 22, Coach Mariah Roby-Stewart’s Tigers put together a 22-26, 25-20, 25-18, 27-25 win over West Hills Lemoore at Paul Mitchell Court in Reedley.

No statistics were available for the West Hills match. In a 25-11, 25-18, 25-12 loss to Fresno City in Reedley on Sept. 17, Lillian Martinez led the Tigers with four kills. Jamie Clothier and Erica Hefley followed with three kills while Gabrielle Leon had seven of the Tigers’ 20 digs.

This Friday, Sept. 29, Reedley College travels to Sonora to face the Columbia College Claim Jumpers at Oak Pavilion. On Wednesday, Oct. 4, Reedley returns home to face the College of the Sequoias Giants at 6 p.m.

Scoring drought plagues RC soccer

All of a sudden, the Reedley College women’s soccer team can’t find the back of the net.

Last week, the Lady Tigers, ranked 14th in the state by the California Community College Sports Information Directors Association, fell 1-0 on Sept. 18 to the College of the Sequoias and 2-0 to Clovis, the number five team in the state.

Against Clovis, Tiger goalie Areal Galvan was credited with five saves while the Tigers had just three shots on goal and just eight overall. Clovis had suffered its first loss of the season three days before against 10th ranked San Joaquin Delta.

Reedley, now 5-3 overall, went from tied for the conference lead to a tie for fourth in the CVC standings. On Sept. 26, the Tigers were scheduled to travel to West Hills Coalinga before hosting Porterville on Friday, Sept, 29, at 6 p.m. Next Tuesday, Oct. 2, Reedley travels to Fresno City for a 4 p.m. conference match.

Will Goldbeck
Mid Valley Times | Contributor