Playmaking: Kingsburg High and Nathan Gamble

Kingsburg High and Nathan Gamble (30), seen here earlier this season, couldn't get past Central Valley Christian. 

Johnie Thomsen/Special to the Enterprise Recorder

VISALIA – The Kingsburg High football team put up a worthy fight, but Central Valley Christian had too many playmakers for the Vikings. The Cavaliers defeated Kingsburg 24-7 on Friday night in a Central Sequoia League game.

The loss snapped the five-game winning streak of Kingsburg (5-2 overall, 1-1 CSL). Like its rival Selma a week earlier, Kingsburg could not stop CVC when necessary.

“They made big plays,” Vikings coach David Wilson said. “They’re real talented. They just made more plays, but I’m happy with our effort. We wanted to play tough and physical and we did that.”

One of the Vikings who excelled was Josh Chavez, who sacked CVC quarterback JJ Lino twice.

“They were my first sacks of the season, so they felt good,” Chavez said. “We played good, but they just out-played us. They made some big plays and now we just have to step up (this) week against Dinuba.”

Kingsburg hosts CSL co-leader Dinuba at 7 p.m. Friday. The Emperors defeated visiting Selma 24-7 Friday night.

The Cavaliers dominated behind 151 yards passing by Lino and 107 yards rushing by Jaalen Rening, a talented sophomore.

Kingsburg countered with 95 tough yards by Bo Jackson, but could not generate enough offense otherwise.

Trailing 17-0 at halftime, Kingsburg came out strong after the break by using an unbalanced offensive line. The Vikings trekked 54 yards on 11 plays on its second possession of the third quarter – 10 of those plays being Jackson rushes – to score on a 1-yard run by Jackson.

“Bo is tough to bring down,” said CVC coach Mason Hughes. “You can’t arm tackle him.”

It was still 17-7 mid-way through the fourth quarter when CVC’s Tanner Rocha intercepted his second pass, this one setting the Cavaliers up on the CVC 17. The hosts consumed most of the remaining time before scoring on Rening’s 3-yard run with 1:33 left in the game to put the Cavaliers ahead by 17. That ended the suspense.

“I’ll be able to go to church and to soccer with a smile on my face,” quipped Hughes, a Kingsburg resident whose children Tyler, Jori and Kendall all play youth sports in Kingsburg.

Hughes also confirmed he knows Kingsburg coach Wilson personally and said he “appreciates what he’s done” with the Vikings (a 13-6 record over one-plus seasons).  

Kingsburg did a nice job to hold CVC to a field goal on the Cavaliers’ first drive of the game and CVC led 3-0.

It remained that way until late in the first half when Noah Satterle managed one of CVC’s three interceptions, setting up the Cavaliers on the Viking 31.

A 25-yard completion from Lino to Gavin Salierno preceded Rening’s 6-yard TD run for 10-0 with 3:34 left in the half.

Following a Kingsburg three-and-out, CVC took firm control of the game with a 26-yard TD pass from Lino to Saliern with 25.7 seconds left in the half.  

Penalties and turnovers plagued Kingsburg throughout.

“We just put ourselves behind the sticks too much,” Wilson said. “It’s tough when you want to run the ball and it’s third-and-20.”

The Cavaliers (7-0, 2-0) share the CSL lead with Dinuba (6-1, 2-0), a game ahead of Exeter and Kingsburg which each have a league loss.    


John Murphy can be reached at 583-2413 or

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