PREP FOOTBALL: Miners back at home to face Woodcreek
KNOW & GO
What: Nevada Union (2-4, 0-2 SFL) vs. Woodcreek (1-5, 0-2 SFL)
When: 7:30 p.m., Friday
Where: Hooper Stadium, Nevada Union High School
Follow along: On Twitter @WalterLFordIII or online at TheUnion.com
It’s been awhile since the Nevada Union football team last played a game on their new turf in Hooper Stadium. Twenty-eight days to be exact.
“It’s been a long road trip,” Nevada Union head coach Dennis Houlihan said after last week’s 42-19 road loss to Del Oro. “That’s difficult for our guys, so it’s going to be really nice to come home for homecoming and battle with Woodcreek.”
This week is homecoming week for the Miners, who will be playing at home for the first time since a Sept. 8 loss to Lincoln.
Nevada Union (2-4, 0-2 Sierra Foothill League) went 1-2 across its string of road games, beating Napa and falling to league foes Rocklin and Del Oro.
The Miners come into the contest with Woodcreek looking to snap a 27-game SFL losing streak and do so in front of the homecoming crowd.
“Before we leave (the SFL), we’re going to win one of these games,” Houlihan said. “That’s what is keeping them fired up right now.”
The Timberwolves (1-5, 0-2 SFL) come into the bout having lost four straight, including a 42-14 shellacking at the hands of Oak Ridge last week.
For the season, Woodcreek is averaging 22.8 points per game, getting 110.2 passing yards per game and 207.2 rushing yards per game.
Leading the Timberwolves offensive attack is 6-foot, 185-pound Carter Krupp who leads the team in rushing as well as passing. On the ground, Krupp has a 481 rush yards and seven touchdowns. Through the air, Krupp has 661 passing yards to go with seven touchdowns and three interceptions.
Looking to slow Krupp will be a Nevada Union defense that has allowed 39-plus points in each of their past two games, and is allowing 29 points per game overall.
The Miners’ defense is anchored by senior middle linebacker Justin Houlihan with a team-high 59 tackles, including 8.5 that went for a loss.
While NU’s pass rush has been lacking with just two sacks this season, the secondary has impressed with seven interceptions through six games. Leading the secondary has been senior Hayden Fay with three picks.
On the offensive side of the ball, Nevada Union is averaging 22.5 points per game. The ground game has proven prosperous for the Miners as they are averaging 189.5 yards per game. Leading NU’s Wing-T ground game is junior running back Dawson Fay with 615 rushing yards and 10 total touchdowns (seven rushing, two kickoff returns, one passing). Senior running back Tyler Nielson, who scored four touchdowns against Woodcreek last season, has 268 yards rushing and four touchdowns this season.
Through the air, NU has relied on senior quarterback Owen Dal Bon, who has 506 passing yards to go with two touchdowns and four interceptions.
Woodcreek’s defense has struggled this season, allowing an SFL worst 41.8 points per game.
The Timberwolves currently have a four-game winning streak over the Miners, including a 34-32 victory a season ago. The last time NU topped Woodcreek was in 2012, when the Miners beat the Timberwolves, 45-7.
The Miners and Timberwolves will kickoff at 7:30 p.m. today at Hooper Stadium. The NU freshmen game gets going at 5:15 p.m.
AROUND THE SFL
Reigning league champ Folsom (6-0, 2-0 SFL) will host Del Oro (4-2, 1-1 SFL). Rocklin (4-1, 1-0 SFL) heads to Oak Ridge (5-0, 1-0 SFL).
To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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