ESCALON – The football teams from Calaveras and Escalon should have been wearing their throwback uniforms Friday night, because both were intent on playing old-school ball in this Sac-Joaquin Section Division VI quarterfinal.

From beginning to end, though, it was Escalon’s physical Wing-T rushing attack that dominated and led the Cougars to a 39-15 victory over Calaveras. The Cougars led 26-0 in the third quarter before Calaveras’ Zach Nordalh threw a rare pass for a touchdown to get Calaveras on the board.

That sends Escalon (9-2) on the road next week for a rematch with Trans-Valley rival and defending Section Division 6 champion Hilmar (9-2). When the teams met a month ago, Hilmar’s backup kicker booted a field goal in overtime to give the Yellowjackets a 20-17 victory.

The idea of meeting a familiar foe is nothing new for the Cougars. They’ve seen more than enough of Calaveras over the years during the regular season – these two have a regular-season series – and the playoffs.

This was the 11th playoff meeting between the two programs, and Escalon is now 9-2 with nine straight playoff wins over Calaveras since 1991. That includes a 22-20 stunner in the 2010 Section final, when Escalon went the length of the field in the final minute for a game-winning field goal – and won a state title two weeks later.

When these teams met in Week 2 of this season, it was a defensive-dominated affair with neither offense able to rush for more than 127 yards in Escalon’s 21-7 victory. The Cougars’ key player that night was quarterback Lucciano Dutra (10 of 13, 170 yards, TD), but an injured Dutra was watching Friday’s game.

There was little need for a QB this time, as the Cougars jumped ahead 14-0 on Kaden Christensen’s 26-yard TD run and a 2-yard TD run by junior Colton Panero. Gabe Alvarez’s 33-yard field goal, and a goal-line stand capped by Cole Gilbert’s sack on fourth-and-goal put Escalon up 17-0 at halftime.

Calaveras was determined to stick with its running game, which never gained the momentum necessary to snap that long playoff losing streak to Escalon.

Sophomore Ty Harris, the JV starter who made his first career start, also threw his first career TD – a short toss to Panero that made it 33-8 late in the third quarter. Panero added a 2-yard TD run in the fourth quarter, after Alvarez booted his second field goal in the third quarter, to close out the win.

“I’ve played a lot of ball with Ty, so we’re familiar with one another out there,” said Panero, who scored 3 TDs. “He came in and did a great job moving the ball.”