TRUCKEE — The Wolverines needed a flawless performance and perhaps a little bit of help to pull off an upset victory over first-place Fallon on Saturday.
They got neither. The first-place Greenwave proved too big, fast and athletic as the visitors built a 41-6 halftime lead and cruised to a 54-19 win.
It was Fallon’s first win over Truckee — winner of the past four state championships — since 1988.
“Obviously, when you have won four straight state championships, you’re going to have some kind of drop-off at some point,” Fallon coach Brooke Hill said of the Wolverines, who fell to 2-6 on the year. “But they’ll get it turned around. They have good coaches.”
No one has come close to knocking off Fallon this season. The 8-0 Greenwave entered Saturday’s Northern Division I-A contest averaging more than 53 points a game, while its defensive unit had allowed just over 10 points a game.
Led by senior running back Trent Tarner, who finished with a game-high 281 yards on 17 rushes, with three long touchdown runs, Fallon broke off big plays all afternoon against Truckee’s overmatched defense. The Greenwave scored on plays of 55, 37, 70, 58, 41 and 29 yards in the first half alone.
Tarner opened the second half with a 58-yard touchdown run, extending Fallon’s lead to 48-6 and prompting the Greenwave to pull its starters the rest of the way.
The Wolverines (2-6) played a clean game, committing few penalties, while their offense managed to move the ball at times. They rushed for 208 yards, led by senior Austin Vance’s 120 hard-earned yards on 20 carries.
But they couldn’t match Fallon’s high-octane offense.
After both teams opened with punts, Fallon senior quarterback Morgan Dirickson found Tyler Bagby in the flat, and Bagby raced up the sideline 55 yards for a touchdown, shedding several tackles along the way.
Truckee punted again before recovering a Fallon fumble inside the 10-yard line. The Wolverines went three and out, however, and the Greenwave took over again at the Truckee 37-yard line after a punt.
On the next play, Tarner rounded the corner and turned on the burners all the way to the end zone. Beau Marshall kicked through the PAT, and Fallon led 14-0 with 4:33 remaining in the second quarter.
Truckee gained a couple of first downs on its next possession before stalling at midfield and punting. Starting from its own 12, Fallon needed two plays to reach the end zone again. Tarner ran for 18 yards. Dirickson then hit Dylan Jabines with a strike over the middle, and Jabines outran the Truckee defense for a 70-yard touchdown with 1:25 left in the first quarter.
The Wolverines responded with 12-play, 65-yard drive that ended with a hard, 1-yard TD run by senior fullback Lance Bokinskie. The extra point was blocked as Truckee cut the lead to 20-6.
Fallon quickly distanced the gap. Three plays into the ensuing drive, Tarner made a cut and was gone, 58 yards for his second TD of the day.
Following a Truckee three-and-out, Dirickson hooked up with Bagby again for a 41-yard TD. The Greenwave then extended their lead to 41-6 with 3:33 remaining in the half when Dirickson and Joe Pyle connected for a 29-yard score.
The Wolverines opened the second half with promise, driving the ball from their own 22-yard line to the Fallon 38 before losing a fumble.
Three plays later Tarner made a couple of tacklers miss and bolted 58 yards down the field for his third touchdown.
Truckee pieced together a 45-yard touchdown drive early in the fourth, adjusting the score to 48-13 on a 1-yard run by second-string quarterback Sean Bokinskie.
Fallon answered with a 33-yard touchdown run by Charles Fulks. Truckee rounded out the scoring when Gabe Deiro banged his way in to the end zone from 5 yards out with 2:06 remaining.
“I thought we came out and executed our game plan,” Hill said. “We thought if given the opportunity, we could run the ball, and I think we did a good job of that.”