Gavilan's Miguel Redmond runs the ball for Rams during their game Sept. 20 against Yuba at Gilroy High School.
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GILROY—Gavilan College’s bid for a third consecutive victory came up one quarter short Saturday night as the visiting Yuba College Forty Niners scored three touchdowns in the final 12 minutes to top the Rams 45-35 at Garcia-Elder Sports Complex.
After soaring past 60 points in the first two games, the Rams earned four offensive touchdowns as well as one special teams score.
“We scored 35 points, which should be enough to win,” Gavilan coach Spencer Gilford said. “Our offense did enough, but Yuba beat us in the other two phases: defense and special teams.
“Our defense was not quite up to the task,” Gilford continued. “That’s what it came down to—we lost the turnover battle with three fumbles. Yuba capitalized on many of our mistakes. They had a good game plan against us. Every year we play them their defense has been the best we’ve played.”
Gavilan trailed 483-439 in total yards, but did hold a 28-21 edge in first downs.
Drew Fryhoff threw for two touchdowns and Miguel Redmond reached the endzone twice for the hosts.
“That was the most pressure I have been under through three games” Fryhoff said of the big Forty Niner defensive front. “I just need to trust my reads more and stay composed.”
Even with Yuba bringing consistent pressure on defense, Gavilan scored early and did not trail until the fourth quarter.
Sophomore wide-out Deniko Carter finished with 10 catches for 155 yards and one touchdown.
The Rams needed six plays to cover 88 yards for a 7-0 lead with 8:04 left in the first quarter. Facing third and four at the Ram 49, Carter took a short pass from Fryhoff, hurdled one defender and raced to the 51-yard TD.
After punting at the end of the first three series, Yuba drew even at 7-7 behind the tandem of quarterback DaTwon Melvin and wide-out Dylan Campbell. A 39-yard strike put Yuba in business at the Ram 36. Two plays later Campbell slipped through the secondary for a 17-yard TD grab.
The teams matched scoring drives the rest of the half. Redmond scored a touchdown from two yards out to make it 14-7. Melvin answered with a 44-yard toss to Dorian Ferrell. Fryhoff dropped an 11-yard pass inside the right corner of the endzone to a waiting Armani Miller for the go-ahead score. Yuba then marched to the Ram 1-yard-line before settling for an 18-yard field goal by Angel Sanchez for the 21-17 halftime score.
Gavilan needed 12 plays to cover 82 yards for a 28-17 lead with 7:36 left in the third quarter. Miller’s acrobatic catch for a 31-yard gain set up a 12-yard paydirt dash by Redmond.
Yuba netted the game’s next two touchdowns for a 31-28 lead with 11:06 left in the fourth quarter. Wingback Austin Thompson was able to get to the right corner to race the final 34 yards.
Gavilan regained the lead at 35-31 with a special teams effort. Anthony Brooks powered through Yuba’s punt protection to block Jesse Brock’s kick. Darche Jordan scooped up the loose ball and rambled 44 yards to the endzone.
“I was able to scoop up the ball and go,” said Jordan of his first touchdown in either high school of junior college. “It took a lucky bounce.”
The Forty Niners came back with the final two touchdowns.
A Melvin 62-yard pass to Campbell led to a two-yard Thompson TD plunge for the 38-35 Yuba lead. The visitors put the game away on the next series, Quinndarrin Riley going the last nine yards with two minutes left.
Fryhoff completed 25 of 37 pass attempts for 274 yards. Melvin matched with 282 yards and two touchdowns.
Gavilan opens Golden Coast League play Sept. 27 at 7 p.m. against Reedley College on the Tigers’ turf.

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