Truckee football | Wolverines win big at Spring Creek
Courtesy of the Elko Daily Free Press
SPRING CREEK – It’s not a coincidence Truckee has a 16-game winning streak. Nor is it a coincidence the Wolverines haven’t allowed a point in four games this season and in eight of their last nine games.
Defending state champion Truckee is good and Spring Creek found out the hard way Friday night as the Spartans wound up on the losing end of a 41-0 score.
“They’re good and they proved it,” said Spring Creek coach Joel Jund. “I thought defensively we played hard, especially in the second half. We had a good effort, but we have to improve in all three phases of the game. We have to find a way to find some offense. But again, they’ve shut everybody out this year, so you have to give them credit because they’re really good.”
After a first half drubbing that left Spring Creek behind 34-0 at halftime, the Spartans kept Truckee scoreless in the third quarter (interestingly enough, the Wolverines haven’t scored in the third quarter this season) and allowed just a single touchdown in the fourth.
But the outcome was decided well before halftime. The combination of Truckee’s stellar defense and Spring Creek’s struggling offense made the game lopsided early.
Spring Creek (1-3, 0-3) amounted just 44 total yards of offense (22 in the first half) and punted on its first three possessions, while Truckee scored on its first three possessions, all before the six-minute mark elapsed in the first quarter.
Truckee did its first quarter damage with Patrick Shaffer, the backup quarterback, in the game. Starter Ben Bolton didn’t play until the second quarter for internal reasons, but it didn’t seem to hamper the Wolverines too much.
Mitch Nelson returned a punt 85 yards for Truckee’s first score, Colin Christian ran in for an eight-yard score and Shaffer completed a two-yard touchdown pass to Trevor Auldridge.
The Spartans momentarily thought they snapped Truckee’s shutout streak when linebacker Tyler Usko intercepted a tipped Shaffer pass and raced into the end zone for a score. A flag was thrown, however, for a block in the back on the interception return which negated the score.
Spring Creek kept possession deep in Truckee territory, but kicker Colby Patton’s 36-yard field goal attempt was no good and the Wolverines celebrated as if they won a championship.
“(Keeping the shutout streak alive) has become (a goal) for us,” said Truckee coach Bob Shaffer. “It’s not a wherewithal, but we want to keep that streak going as long as we can. The pride the kids take in not letting somebody score and the effort they’re giving is pretty tremendous. That’s the second time (this season) a team has been in scoring position (against us), and our defense rose to the occasion.”
When Bolton did enter the game, Truckee didn’t miss a beat. The senior passed for a 10-yard touchdown to Tony Rodriguez and ran for a five-yard score himself all before halftime.
Spring Creek’s offense didn’t get a first down until the second quarter and wasn’t able to take advantage of the breaks afforded to it by the defense.
The Spartans thought they got a break coming out of halftime when they recovered a fumble on Truckee’s first play from scrimmage on the 20-yard line. But officials said an inadvertent whistle blew, the down was re-played and Spring Creek never got another decent chance to score.
Penalties marred the third quarter, and at one point, Truckee faced a fourth-and-goal from its own 49-yard line.
The only second half scoring was a six-yard touchdown run by the Wolverines’ Kai Goodpaster.
Truckee (4-0, 4-0) finished with 403 yards of offense, 245 of which came on the ground. Ten different players carried the ball for the Wolverines (Morgan Nevin led the way with 60 yards on seven carries) and the quarterback combination of Bolton and Shaffer passed for 158 yards and spread the ball around to five different receivers.
“They have a good chance to get another state championship,” Jund said of Truckee. “They’re solid in every phase of the game. Special teams. They’re great on defense and obviously very good on offense, too. They don’t have a weakness.”
Truckee forced two second half turnovers – a Colin Christian interception of Spring Creek quarterback Travis Spring and a later fumble recovery when Spring was hit from behind and coughed up the ball.
Spring Creek’s 44 yards of offense are a low for the season and the lowest total for the Spartans in quite some time. Running back Logan Irvin carried the ball 14 times for 33 yards, but negative plays and just 15 passing yards kept the Spartans in punt-mode most of the game.
and#8212; This article originally ran in the Elko Daily Free Press (elkodaily.com).
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Students frustrated at the cancellation of sports waved signs and delivered speeches at a Truckee High School protest in an attempt to return to the field this year.