Truckee football | Wolverines preparing for state semifinal versus Elko | SierraSun.com

Truckee football | Wolverines preparing for state semifinal versus Elko

Sylas Wright
Sierra Sun

Sylas Wright/Sierra SunThe Truckee football team is set to host Elko in a state semifinal on Saturday starting at 1 p.m.

TRUCKEE, Calif. and#8212; Elko football coach Luke Sellers wasn’t about to give the Wolverines any bulletin-board fodder before Saturday’s 3A state semifinal in Truckee.

So he instead gave the defending state champs their due credit and#8212; and them some.

and#8220;They’re the best team in the state of Nevada,and#8221; Sellers said when asked about his impression of Truckee when the teams met back on Sept. 11, a game the host Wolverines won 34-0.

Really? The best team in the entire state, including the 4A?

and#8220;Probably in Northern Nevada,and#8221; Sellers answered. and#8220;I haven’t seen any film on anybody down in the South. (Bishop) Gorman is probably real good, but I’d say Truckee is the best team in Northern Nevada, for sure.and#8221;

Truckee coach Bob Shaffer wasn’t buying the endorsement.

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and#8220;That sounds like Luke Sellers trying to make us feel a lot better than we are,and#8221; Shaffer said with a chuckle.

Either way, the Wolverines have established themselves as the team to beat in the 3A. They’re 10-0 coming off a 47-14 rout against Fallon to open the postseason last week, and are riding a 22-game win streak dating back to their 2008 state championship loss. In their 10 wins in 2010, the Wolverines have outscored opponents 446-51.

Elko also has fared well in its first year competing in the 3A. The former 4A member enters Saturday’s state semifinal as the North’s No. 2 seed, at 8-2 overall. Besides the loss at Truckee in the second game of the season, the Indians’ only other loss came against rival Spring Creek, 28-27, in overtime on Oct. 28.

and#8220;When we played them before it was only the second game of the season, and (Sellers) was still a brand new coach,and#8221; Shaffer said. and#8220;They’ve had another nine weeks to get those kids better prepared, and they have a coaching staff that does that. We saw the film they had against Dayton (last week), and they looked quite a bit different in their schemes, so we expect a much better football team this time.

and#8220;They should have a lot more success. Hopefully not too much, but they’ll be better.and#8221;

The Indians have favored the run over the pass this year, throwing the ball only 74 times compared to 433 rushes on the season. Senior Ty Wilson leads Elko’s running game with 1,153 yards on 124 carries and#8212; a 9.3-yard average. He ran for 159 yards and scored three touchdowns to help lead Elko to a 39-8 win against Dayton to open the postseason last Saturday.

and#8220;On our team, we look to rush the ball first and throw it second,and#8221; Sellers said. and#8220;and#8230; A lot of the offense falls on our running back, Ty Wilson.and#8221;

Raymond Schroeder, Elko’s leading rusher when through the first seven games, is out with an injury, Sellers said, while quarterback Chris Davis has thrown for 583 yards on 25-of-38 passing, with nine touchdowns and three interceptions.

The Wolverines, on the other hand, have swept through the season using a balanced combination of the run and pass. Senior quarterback Ben Bolton has completed 106 of his 154 passes for 1,911 yards, with 21 touchdowns, while 17 different players have combined for 2,695 yards rushing on 359 carries and#8212; a 7.7-yard average.

The Truckee squad is banged up, however, as tight end James DePew and linemen Dillon Sheedy and Taylor Wulff-Morrison are out with ankle sprains, and Trevor Auldridge is nursing a hip flexor injury, Shaffer said.