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Bruins Falter Late In 33-30 Defeat
A second half scoring extravaganza swung host Linden High's way in the final period as the Lions bullied to back-to-back touchdowns in the final nine minutes to undermine a stellar Bruin effort and best Riverbank High's varsity football team 33-30 on Sept. 14 at Lion Stadium.

Bruin quarterback Angel Torres passed for a season-high 142 yards, Gabe Manriquez erupted for a long touchdown jaunt for the second straight week and the Bruins forced four key turnovers, but Linden's beefy offensive line (led by 6 foot, 5 inch 327 pound Jacob Lovelace) proved resilient down the stretch as Linden powered to 274 rushing yards on the night.

"Their offensive line kind of wore us down a bit," Riverbank coach James Oliver said. "I thought we played hard and gave it all we had. We just didn't have enough at the end."

Prior to Linden's Homecoming festivities at halftime, Riverbank had mounted a 14-7 lead on the momentum of Lion fumbles, a 67-yard touchdown pass from Torres to Alfredo Capas and a one yard touchdown run from Torres.

Linden's huge second half began with just two carries from Andrew Lewis (25 rushes, 220 yards), who ran 23 yards to midfield and 48 more to the end zone just 37 seconds into the half. When Riverbank fumbled away their next possession, Linden responded with a 19-yard scoring pass (Eddie Murarik to Lewis) with 4:02 remaining in the third.

The Bruins answered back when Christian Torres made a spectacular interception along the sideline and outran Lion defensive backs to haul in a dazzling 75-yard scoring strike from Angel Torres for a 21-21 deadlock at the end of the quarter.

Riverbank took a surprising lead moments later when a Lion fumble stalled a drive and forced a punt that ultimately snapped into the Lion end zone for a safety. The ensuing kickoff was brought back 82 yards for a score by Manriquez, who is also a sprinter on the track team.

The nine-point lead was erased when Lewis broke free on eight and 36-yard scores to give the Lions the final advantage on the scoreboard. Lewis (four touchdowns, 309 offensive yards) also nabbed one of three Lion interceptions on Angel Torres.

The Bruins struggled to 66 rushing yards on 40 carries. Angel Torres found success on deceptive quarterback keepers to tally 40 yards on 13 rushes. Orlando Gutierrez gashed the Lions for key first down runs up the middle, but finished with just 16 yards on 11 touches after being stopped behind the line by an aggressive Linden front. Gutierrez also had 12 tackles on defense while Fabian Arana nabbed 10. Arana, Antonio Perez (blocked extra point, safety) and Ryan Stiner recovered fumbles for the Bruin defense. Angel Esquivel was a perfect 4 for 4 on extra point attempts.

"I guess if I was a fan in the seats I would have been very entertained," Oliver said with a laugh. "But I think that game took away a couple years of my life.

"The kids are obviously disappointed but they have nothing to be ashamed of. They played hard."

Riverbank (2-2) has a stiff test on Friday in host Orestimba (4-0). The Warriors blasted Gustine 62-0 a week ago and outplayed large-school East Union of the Valley Oak League to a 31-13 defeat on Aug. 31.

Standout junior runner Steven Machado rumbled to 203 of his stunning 838 yards (14 touchdowns) during the win. According to, Machado is third in the state in rushing yards and second in rushing touchdowns. He is 23rd nationwide among reported runners (yards) who have played just four games or less. Machado scrambled to a season-high 222 yards last year as the Warriors bested Riverbank 21-14.

"Orestimba is good, but we will be ready," Oliver said. "Machado is really good, and for the most part if we can keep a handle on Machado, we can be in this ball game."