Truckee football | Wolverines cement legacy in program’s storied history | SierraSun.com

Truckee football | Wolverines cement legacy in program’s storied history

Sylas Wright
Sierra Sun

Dannette Arney/Submitted to swright@sierrasun.comTruckee players hoist the 3A State Championship plaque after defeating Moapa Valley 27-7 in Las Vegas on Saturday. The Wolverines finished 24-0 the past two seasons to become the first Truckee team to earn back-to-back state titles in undefeated fashion.

LAS VEGAS and#8212; When the second straight fairy-tale season came to an end, Truckee players weren’t sure what to do with themselves.

Some had no choice, as former Wolverines rushed the field and tackled their old teammates to the turf in a scene of elation. After the postgame handshakes with their game opponent, most mingled through the dense crowd of family and friends, giant smiles smeared across their faces, their chests puffed out with pride. Others couldn’t bottle their emotion as tears streamed from their eyes.

Senior center Shane Fisher, his eyes puffy and red as he pinballed through the horde, was among the players torn with bittersweet emotion. After all, his Wolverines had just completed back-to-back undefeated seasons and#8212; at 24-0 and#8212; a feat no other team in Truckee football’s storied history accomplished.

But for Fisher and his senior teammates, the celebration of Saturday’s 27-7 state championship win over Moapa Valley also meant the end.

Fisher was plucked from the crowd. and#8220;How are you feeling right now?and#8221;

and#8220;Emotional,and#8221; said the undersized but overachieving lineman and#8212; just like so many others in Truckee’s past. and#8220;It’s gotta end sometime though, so it’s a good way to do it.and#8221;

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Standing by Fisher’s side, still wearing black beads of artificial turf on his arms after being tackled by friends, senior receiver and defensive back Tony Rodriguez answered the same question.

and#8220;I have mixed emotions,and#8221; said Rodriguez, who came up big with a blocked field goal and interception in the game. and#8220;I’m super excited. I can’t believe we went back-to-back undefeated. and#8230; I’m gonna miss it terribly. All these seniors, all these juniors, they all worked incredibly hard. There’s nothing like Truckee football.and#8221;

Indeed. And despite all the great teams that have left their mark on the program, there’s been nothing quite like the past two years of Truckee football. In that time, Truckee’s now-senior class went 24-0 while shellacking their opponents by a collective margin of 1,080-125 in their varsity careers. They posted a score differential of 528-65 this season and 552-60 last year.

Both point totals exceed that of any other Truckee team, while the 60 points allowed last year is a Truckee record, and the 65 allowed this year ranks third.

The staggering numbers begged the obvious question of head coach Bob Shaffer, who has led the Wolverines to seven of their 10 state championships in his 16 seasons at the helm.

and#8220;Is this the best Truckee team you’ve ever coached?and#8221;

Shaffer, who has coached some juggernaut squads in his time, smiled.

and#8220;Well, the records say yes. If we were to line them up (against past teams) or whatever, I don’t know if that’s true or not. But what they have accomplished never has been accomplished, so I’m gonna say they’re the best group that’s come through,and#8221; the coach said.

According to the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association record book, the Wolverines’ 24-game win streak ranks sixth-best in Nevada football history. Seven more victories and they’ll eclipse the 30-game streak set by Bishop Manogue from 2002 through 2004. The Meadows, a 2A program from the South, owns the NIAA record, at 41 consecutive wins.

Truckee players weren’t concerned with the record books after their big win. They simply enjoyed milling around the field with their peers, absorbing one of the happiest moments of their young lives.

and#8220;I can’t even explain it,and#8221; said senior lineman Dillon Sheedy. and#8220;I’m so overwhelmed with happiness, and sadness, that it’s over. This program has been a big part of my life. I’m sad that it’s coming to end, but I’m happy it ended like this. It’s a great feeling. I’m on top of the world right now.and#8221;

Not even 20 minutes after the historic chapter in Truckee football came to an end, senior wingback and defensive back Mitch Nelson already longed for more.

and#8220;Oh my God, I’m going to miss it. I already miss it,and#8221; he said. and#8220;I’m ready for practice on Monday.and#8221;

To view a photo gallery from the state championship game, go to http://www.sierrasun.com/2010statefootball.