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’Jackets win a snoozer over helpless Emery

By Jared Green Daily Planet Staff
Saturday October 20, 2001

Emery High took on a giant on Friday night, and got stepped on. 

The Berkeley Yellowjackets ran up 330 yards on the ground against the overmatched Spartans, winning 35-0 despite failing to complete a pass in the game. The ’Jackets held Emery to negative-eight yards in the game, allowing just two first downs, one via a Berkeley penalty. 

“This is a big victory for us. We got out alive and healthy,” Emery head coach Bernie O’Hara said. “This was David versus Goliath, and we just got beat.” 

The score could have been even uglier if Berkeley had been able to get their usual deep passing game going. But starting quarterback Raymond Pinkston injured his ankle on the second play of the game and left the game for good, leaving the ball in backup Lee Franklin’s hands. The Berkeley coaches decided to button up the offense, calling for 23 running plays on offense before allowing Franklin to throw a pass late in the second quarter. That pass should have gone for a touchdown, but wide receiver Jason Goodwin dropped Franklin’s bomb despite being wide open well behind the defense. It was the only pass Franklin would throw in the first half. 

The ’Jackets really didn’t need to air the ball out against the Spartans, as their offensive line opened up huge holes for the running backs. The opening drive consisted of 10 runs for 82 yards, with tailback Germaine Baird accounting for 65 of them on six carries, and fullback Aaron Boatwright pounded the ball into the end zone from five yards out for a 7-0 lead. 

Emery gained their lone offensive first down on the ensuing drive, and it was all downhill from there. They netted just eight yards in the first half, but avoided turning over the ball and managed to keep the ’Jackets off the scoreboard through halftime. 

Berkeley’s defense keyed the high-scoring second half for the ’Jackets, giving the offense four short fields to work with. First defensive lineman Justin Thepsoukmalay forced a fumble from Emery quarterback Keith Reynolds, with Greg Mitchell recovering on the Emery 15. Backup fullback Roger Mason did the rest, bulling his way up the middle for a score on the next play.  

Another Reynolds fumble gave Berkeley the ball at the Emery 35 on the next drive, and Boatwright punched the ball into the end zone from a yard out for his second score of the day. 

Emery’s next drive lost nine yards, and the ensuing punt died at their 33. Three plays later, Baird had his lone touchdown of the day to make the score 28-0 with nine minutes left in the game. O’Hara requested that the clock run for the rest of the game, in the interest of keeping the score decent and keeping injuries to a minimum.  

The ’Jackets could tack on just one more touchdown, a Craig Hollis nine-yard run.