PREP FOOTBALL: Miners shutout by Yuba City | TheUnion.com

PREP FOOTBALL: Miners shutout by Yuba City

YUBA CITY — It wasn't the start to the season the Miners were hoping for.

Nevada Union's offense never got going and its defense wore down as the game wore on, resulting in a 39-0 loss to the Yuba City Honkers in the season opener for both teams Friday night.

Playing on their home turf, the Honkers dominated both sides of the ball, racking up 249 yards rushing and 202 passing, while holding the Miners to just 61 yards on the ground and 61 yards through the air.

Nevada Union's new head coach Brad Sparks put the blame on himself.

"Didn't coach well enough, didn't coach hard enough," Sparks said after the game. "These guys deserve better than that. We've got to do a better job as a coaching staff. I thought our guys played a heck of a ball game. It was 13-0 forever, and we just couldn't produce any points. We just sputtered and sputtered."

The Honkers came out strong and scored on their first two possessions to grab a 13-0 edge in the first quarter.

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Nevada Union's defense stiffened after that and held the Honkers in check until late in the second quarter, when Yuba City pieced together a nine-play, 75-yard drive capped by a 2-yard touchdown plunge to go up 19-0.

The Honkers piled on in the second half, getting touchdown runs of 43 yards and 42 yards to go with a 39-yard touchdown pass.

Only once in the game did the Miners get in the red zone, but that drive was halted when NU turned the ball over on downs at the 3-yard line.

Leading NU's offense was Dawson Fay with 48 rushing yards on 11 carries. He also completed six passes for 58 yards. Cameron Dallago led all NU pass catchers with four catches for 36 yards.

"We're going to be OK," Sparks said. "We're trying to get this thing turned around and it takes time. I believe in these guys. They're going to be fine."

The Miners (0-1) have their home opener next week, welcoming Spanish Springs (Sparks, Nevada) to Hooper Stadium.

JV AND FROSH

The junior varsity Miners fell 44-7 in their contest with Yuba City.

Trailing 12-0 in the first quarter, the Miners hit on a 24-yard touchdown pass from J.T. Conway to Ayrton Swasey.

The Honkers would pull away from there, though, scoring 32 unanswered points the rest of the way.

Nevada Union's freshman squad also dropped its bout with Yuba City, falling 42-8.

Scoring the Miners lone touchdown was quarterback Gabe Baker. On the defensive side of the ball, NU's Julian Spackman had a strong game.

AROUND THE FOOTHILL VALLEY LEAGUE

With the Miners' loss teams from the newly formed Foothill Valley League went a combined 3-3. Placer (1-0) opened with a 48-21 win over Pleasant Grove. Lincoln (0-1) lost their season opener to Oak Ridge, 56-20. Oakmont (1-0) blanked El Camino, 45-0. Ponderosa (1-0) earned a big win over River City, 64-6. And, Rio Linda (0-1) lost to Center, 40-26.

To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email wford@theunion.com.

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