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Del Oro makes a convincing return to the postseason

Golden Eagles rout Christian Brothers 42-13 in playoff opener
By: Eric J. Gourley, Gold Country News Service
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Max Magleby and the Del Oro High football team have rediscovered their swagger. Magleby threw for 168 yards and four touchdowns and the No. 8 Golden Eagles routed No. 9 Christian Brothers 42-13 last Friday to advance to the Sac-Joaquin Section Division II quarterfinals. After missing the playoffs last season for the first time in eight years and dropping consecutive Sierra Foothill League battles on the road late this fall, Del Oro has posted a pair of convincing wins as it prepares to face undefeated top seed St. Mary’s in Stockton Friday night. “We’re going to go out with confidence,” said Magleby, who completed 10-of-11 passes against the Falcons. “Not to be cocky but in a sense play with some cockiness to make our confidence go up. We’re here to play. We’re not going to just get pushed around just because they’re the No. 1 team. We’re going to go out and have some confidence and play with some enthusiasm.” The Eagles (9-2) made an emphatic playoff return in their rout of Christian Brothers (7-4), their first postseason victory since they edged Burbank 16-14 on Nov. 23, 2007 before falling to Granite Bay in the section title game. Del Oro improved its all-time playoff record to 30-13 with the win over Christian Brothers. The Eagles scored at least 40 points for the sixth time this season. “It was crucial because we had to come back this year and show everybody that we are a team that can hang with the big boys and do it in the playoffs,” said senior defensive lineman Brandon Markin, who had a big sack last Friday. Del Oro will face a stern challenge from the top seed Rams, who cruised past No. 16 Buhach Colony 49-7 in their playoff opener. The Eagles beat St. Mary’s 36-15 on the road in 2005, the last meeting between the teams. “We know they’re a very good football team,” Del Oro head coach Casey Taylor said of the Rams. “They’re obviously one of the top teams in the state. We’re just looking forward to the challenge. We’re excited to get the opportunity to play them. We feel it’s an opportunity to really make some noise here. To be the best you’ve got to beat the best, and St. Mary’s is definitely one of those teams.” The Rams run a potent spread offense that has averaged 53.2 points per game this season. St. Mary’s scored a season-low 34 points in a September romp of San Jose’s Bellarmine Prep. Both teams allow an average of slightly under 13 points per game on defense. “We’re not intimidated by them,” Taylor said. “We don’t feel they’ve played the caliber of teams that we’ve played. We’ve been in a couple of playoff-type games already and we’ve been real close. They’re obviously very talented. Hopefully we’ll have an opportunity in the fourth quarter to put a drive together to win it.” Junior tight end Adrian Williams is eager to get another chance to prove the Eagles can play well on the road. They’re 6-0 at home and 2-2 away from Golden Eagle Stadium. “I want to go into their territory and I just want to beat them,” said Williams, who caught two touchdown passes and ran for another score against Christian Brothers. “I want to beat them bad.”