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Logan piles on big plays to beat ’Jackets

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Saturday September 15, 2001

Berkeley scores first touchdown of season in loss 


The Berkeley Yellowjackets went into Friday night’s football game against James Logan hoping to pull an upset. But halfway into the first quarter, they were just hoping not to get embarrassed. 

The visiting Colts scored touchdowns on three of their first eight offensive plays to pull out to a 22-0 lead with just six minutes gone in the game, and didn’t let up until the final whistle, winning by an eventual score of 42-6. 

Logan scored on plays of 70, 62, 51 and 44 yards in the game, killing the ’Jackets with their big-play ability. Those four plays represented 227 of Logan’s 332 total yards, and Colt quarterback Brandon Ting threw for only 162 yards in the game, but they came on just four completions. 

On the opening drive of the game, Ting found his twin brother Ryan behind the Berkeley defense for a 62-yard touchdown pass on the second play, and the Colts made the two-point conversion for a 8-0 lead before the fans were even settled into their seats. 

The ’Jackets couldn’t get a first down on the ensuing drive, and punter Curtis Goodwin watched the ball sail over his head on the snap. Goodwin recovered the ball, but was smothered on the 5-yard line, and Logan running back Johnathan Ugay plowed through the middle for a touchdown seconds later. 

Disaster hit Berkeley again on the next drive. Germaine Baird had a nice return to midfield, but fullback Nick Schooler fumbled a pitch from quarterback Raymond Pinkston on the first play, and Joshua Mayfield recovered the ball for Logan. Ugay found a seam and rumbled for a 44-yard touchdown soon after, and Logan was up by 22 points and looked to be on the way to completely dominating the ’Jackets. 

“Big plays killed us today, but we didn’t let down today. That’s a positive sign,” Berkeley head coach Matt Bissell said after the game. 

Berkeley finally found the end zone for the first time this season, taking advantage of three Colt penalties and some nice passing by Pinkston to drive the ball inside the 10. Pinkston finally dove into the end zone on a sweep from three yards out. 

The ’Jackets finally caught a break when Logan’s Ernesto Munoz fumbled the following kickoff, and Robert Hunter-Ford recovered for Berkeley on the Logan 37. Momentum seemed to be swinging the home team’s way, but it quickly went back to the other side. Pinkston lofted a long pass that wideout Lee Franklin came down with in a crowd in the end zone, but the officials called the play back for offensive pass interference. The ’Jackets sagged after losing that score, and didn’t mount another serious drive until the game was nearly over. 

“Looking back, that call was huge,” Bissell said. “It was a big momentum switch. That’s a tough play to call back.” 

Berkeley ended up punting the ball away, and the Colts put on their first long drive of the game, covering 64 yards in 10 plays and ending with Ryan Ting finding the end zone on a nine-yard sweep, making the score 28-6 at halftime. 

Last week, Foothill High decided to take it easy in the second half with a big lead on the ’Jackets. Not so for Logan. They kept on going for the big play, and they got two more in the second half. The twins hooked up again early in the third quarter, this time for a 70-yard touchdown, then running back Rodney Roy broke loose for a 51-yard run for the final score of the game. 

“Our defense was good except for a few plays,” Berkeley defensive end Akeem Brown said. “We just had guys making mental mistakes, being in the wrong place.” 

Berkeley’s pain only got worse as the game went on. Several starters went down in the second half, including Baird, who hurt his leg early in the third quarter. Without their best ground threat and behind by a bunch, the ’Jackets were forced to go to the air. Pinkston played bravely, completing 15 of 32 for 159 yards, but was forced to scramble around a lot by the Logan defensive line. He ended the game by twisting his ankle on the final play. 

“It hurts when you see your starters go down,” Bissell said, noting that Baird is expected to be ready for next week’s game. “It limits what you can do out there.” 

Things don’t get any easier next week for the ’Jackets, as they head down to Dos Palos, yet another team that beat them last season and will be heavily favored against Berkeley. 

“Such a tough pre-season schedule can be demoralizing,” Bissell said. “But hopefully the tough games will bring our level up.”