Biggest 1-A test of season | NevadaAppeal.com

Biggest 1-A test of season

Mike Sciandra
msciandra@lahontanvalleynews.com
The Greenwave coaching staff assembles the team into a huddle at Fallon's last home game. Fallon entertains Elko tonight at 7 p.m. for Homecoming.
STEVE RANSON / LVN |

The Greenwave varsity football team is eying another win for Homecoming tonight after their big victory against Dayton last week.

The Wave is currently at 4-1 overall and 4-0 in league play.

“We went out and did what we were supposed to do,” coach Brooke Hill said. “The kids went out and executed, and when you do that, we’re pretty good so the kids were pretty good Friday night.”

This is a big week for the Wave with their homecoming game against Elko at 7 p.m. at the Edward Arciniega Athletic Complex

In light of homecoming, even with their winning streak, Hill said he believes that Elko is going to be Fallon’s most important game of the year.

Fallon’s victory over Dayton was owed strongly to a newly improved passing game with five touchdown passes in the first half thrown by senior quarterback Connor Richardson.

“He had a really good efficient game,” said Hill on Richardson. “Obviously, we played well as a whole on the defense as well.”

Hill also acknowledged that this was one of the best benchmarks of the Wave’s improved passing game, and that this transition from their pistol game to such a strong level had been a long time coming.

“That’s the part that comes a lot slower than the rest,” Hill said, “especially when you have a kid (Richardson) who, even though he’s a senior, has played a lot as a quarterback in the lower levels and hasn’t played at the varsity level until this year. So you want him to get better and to gain that experience, and obviously he’s getting better and getting more in tune and in rhythm with the receivers. Hopefully, we can continue that.”

Richardson currently has 161 yards passing after the win against the Dust Devils, a win that seemed to him not so surprising in light of the Wave’s improved passing game.

“Dayton, coming in we knew they weren’t a very good team,” Richardson said. “They were winless this year, haven’t scored a point offensively, but we still got up for the game and we saw what they were running defensively and that we could just attack them easily with our passing game.”

Like Hill, though, Richardson also anticipates tonight’s homecoming game against Elko is their biggest challenge.

“This is the biggest game of the year so far for us,” Richardson said, “so as far as we’re concerned, our season starts now. We watched Elko on film, you know, they’re a good team and we’re excited for the challenge. We think we can take care of business.”

Beyond passing, Fallon’s performance against Dayton was also owed to a strong blocking game and the consistency in performance that Hill cites each week as their strength. Junior Cade Vercellotti achieved another 80 yards rushing, only a little under his usual 100 yard weeks and one of his first games without a touchdown.

Junior Evan Bitter was also exemplary with a long interception return for a touchdown while Brock Uptain shut down the Dust Devils’ offense with key tackles.

“I think our entire defense is good,” Richardson said. “So I think we’re going to shut down their (Elko’s) offense. Offensively, they don’t look like they can do anything against our defense. I think the passing game is going to be huge against them this Friday night.”

While the Wave is still without senior Trae Workman due to an injury, Hill noted that Workman’s recent surgery was successful, and that he hopes the Wave might see him again in the next couple of weeks after rehabilitation.

The Indians are currently 3-1 both overall and in league play, just behind the Wave in their record.

“This is a big game since they’re right on our heels, and you know they’re always a big rivalry for us,“ Hill said. “So you know, that, mixed with homecoming week, means it’s going to be a big game for us.”