Homecoming victory sweet for Wolverines
Yerington is supposed to be the surprise team of the year, but just not in Truckee. When you lose 49-15, you’re not really surprising anyone.
That’s what happened Saturday in Surprise Stadium for the Wolverines as they maintained their 3A first place tie with Bishop Manogue and stayed one game over next week’s opponent Spring Creek.
Yerington gave the Wolverines a little bit of trouble early in the game, even going ahead by one point in the second quarter, but once the defense figured out Yerington’s fly offense, it was over.
“I think once we had seen what they had to throw at us there in that first quarter and a half, our kids then knew what to expect and did a pretty good job of shutting it down,” coach Bob Shaffer said.
Looking ahead, the Wolverines face what will likely be their three toughest opponents in 5-2 Spring Creek, 5-0 Bishop Manogue and rival North Tahoe, which, even at 2-5, can be a threat.
“We’re going to have to do much better over these next three regular season games with Spring Creek, (Bishop) Manogue and North Tahoe, or we’ll be in trouble,” Shaffer said. “It should be easy for them (the players) to concentrate on football. It may be a little hard to concentrate on school and homework, but these next three games should be a lot of fun.”
They are going to take these last three games one at a time, starting with tomorrow’s match up in Spring Creek.
“They’re well-known for a grind it out running attack,” Shaffer said. “But they also have a very good quarterback, Mike Grouse, who’s multi-talented, somewhat like Kevin Schlesinger, where he can run the ball real well and he can throw the ball real well and he’s got two good receivers (James Pond and Brad Dillenburg).”
The Spring Creek offense can spread itself out, making threats from all over the field.
“It isn’t like where we can focus in on shutting down one thing,” Shaffer said. “We’re going to have to have a great overall defensive effort, special teams effort and hopefully we can wear some of their two-way players down with up tempo on offense.”
The Homecoming game against Yerington turned into just a warm-up for the Wolverines.
Truckee scored on their first drive, with a 15-yard touchdown pass to senior tight end Mike Acuff to put them up 7-0. That score remained until 11:03 in the second quarter when Yerington took the lead with an 18-yard touchdown run by running back Matt Galvin. The conversion was good and the Lions went up 7-8.
Then on Truckee’s next possession, Schlesinger threw the ball up for grabs and Yerington’s Shawn McCarty came down with it. They were able to drive only a little before they went for the first down on a gutsy fourth and nine play.
“I was getting a little rattled. I don’t know why, I shouldn’t have,” senior Quarterback Kevin Schlesinger said. “Coach (Shaffer) yelled at me which I needed that yelling to calm me down and get my head back in the game.”
The interception about ended all of Truckee’s ugliness, albeit brief ugliness.
Truckee took the lead back with 4:20 left in the first half when Schlesinger scrambled for an 11-yard touchdown run to put Truckee up 14-8.
Yerington wasn’t able to move the ball on their next drive and Truckee took over. With 19 seconds left, Schlesinger found junior receiver and defensive back JR Murphy open for a 16-yard touchdown pass. The two-pointer was good, putting Truckee up 22-8.
“The first quarter they gave us a scare,” Schlesinger said. “They didn’t want to play in the second half. They were tired. They had nothing left in the gas tank.”
In the third quarter, junior running back Nick Smith juked and jived his way in for a 12-yard TD run. That was followed by sophomore receiver Jamie Maehler taking a handoff and running 70 yards for another touchdown 1:08 later. Then three minutes later, Smith had another plunge this time from three yards out.
Yerington was finally putting together what could have been an impressive drive, but they fumbled the ball away and senior tackle Rafa Herrera landed on it as the third quarter expired, with Truckee up 42-8.
“It was good,” Herrera said. “(My) first fumble in two years.”
A Truckee fumble cost them a touchdown in the fourth, as Yerington defensive end John Little scooped the ball and rumbled 60 yards for a touchdown to make the score 42-15.
But now Shaffer was mixing things up. Senior linebacker Aldo Serna was thrown in at running back and led a drive. On the 11 yard line of Yerington, he ran the ball up the middle, got stopped, bounced out to his left and ran around the defense into the end zone for the final score of the game, 49-15.
Before today, Serna ran the ball two times for nine yards all season.
“It feels great. First touchdown since I was a sophomore,” Serna said. “My sophomore year I got only one touchdown, too. So this might be my last one.”
Today, he ran for 53 yards on 6 carries.
Schlesinger finished the game with 17 completions on 21 attempts with 263 yards, plus two touchdown passes and an interception. He also ran for 74 yards on seven carries plus the one touchdown plunge. Sophomore Jamie Maehler had six catches for 78 yards, Murphy had four catches for103 yards. Smith carried the ball 11 times for 72 yards plus the two touchdowns.
Last Thursday, the freshman squad took out Fernley, 43-0. Quarterback Robert Jones was sick, so Tim Born stepped in to lead the Wolverines with an 11 for 14 performance, plus two touchdown passes. Mike Lopez led the running game with 173 yards followed by Ben Tonin with 138 yards and Micah Carbajal with 110 yards. The defensive shut-out was led by John Hooper with 15 tackles and a fumble recovery, Sean Chappell with 12 tackles and Riley Allanson with nine tackles and two fumble recoveries, one returned 30 yards for touchdown. Their last home game is today against Lowry at 2 p.m.