Carson rolls to easy 50-0 playoff victory
Carson High and Boise State are very much alike. Both teams have prolific offenses that garner a lot of media attention, while their defenses are very good, but often don’t get the recognition they deserve.
The Senators’ defense took center stage Friday night, intercepting four passes leading to 21 first-half points and holding North Valleys to 118 yards total offense en route to an easy 50-0 win in the first round of the Northern 4A regional playoffs at Carson High.
What makes the shutout even more impressive is that Carson played without two starters on defense – tackle Justin Barlow and linebacker Junior Valladares. Barlow is still day-to-day with an ankle injury, while Valladares broke school rules and didn’t attend the game.
Carson improved to 9-2 and will host Galena, a 31-14 winner over Spanish Springs, next Friday at 7 p.m.
“We don’t feel we need credit,” said linebacker Luke Carter. “We just go out and do the job. It shows on the scoreboard. We know what we did.”
“Our defense controlled the line of scrimmage,” Carson coach Blair Roman said. “We were able to put pressure on him (Tim Herman) and force some bad passes. It’s tough to beat us if you give us a short field.”
North Valleys gained 57 of its 118 yards in the first quarter. The Senators allowed only 61 the rest of the game, including a minus-7 in the second half.
Carson’s defense now has 22 interceptions, four shy of tying the record of 26 set in 1979 by Virgin Valley and 1980 by Wooster.
The defense has given up just six points in the last three weeks and has posted three shutouts this season. The Senators are giving up a mere 11.5 per game.
“We have a really good defense,” said quarterback Blake Plattsmier, who threw for 137 yards and two scores, both to Ean Witter. “Every game they take the momentum away from the other team.”
The defense did exactly that in the opening period, giving the offense great field position when Tyler Collins, who started in place of Valladares, intercepted a deflected pass at the Carson 36.
Five plays later the Senators were in the end zone thanks to Dylan Sawyers’ 47-yard scoring run, his 23rd TD of the season. Witter’s PAT made it 7-0 with 2:53 left in the opening quarter. Sawyers gained 109 on 10 carries.
An 8-yard sack by Ryan Hoskins forced North Valleys to punt from inside its own 10, and Carson took possession at the North Valleys 37.
Carson kept it on the ground. Sinnott (13 carries, 69 yards) gained 7 to the 30 and Sawyers gained 17 yards down to the NV 13. Sinnott busted loose for a TD on the next play, the first of his two scores. Witter’s PAT made it 14-0 with :06 left in the quarter.
On the first play of the ensuing possession, Herman threw a pass in the left flat. Josh Peacock jumped the route, picked off the pass at the 32 and took it back 19 yards down to the NV 13, setting up Sinnott’s 7-yard scoring run. Witter’s PAT made it 21-0.
“I did jump it,” Peacock said. “He still didn’t see me.”
Four plays later. Carson had another interception as Connor Beattie picked off a Herman pass along the right sideline at the Carson 23.
The Senators followed with their best drive of the night, going 77 yards in 13 plays. The possession was capped by a 31-yard scoring pass from Plattsmier to Witter on a fourth-and-19 play. Witter outleaped Robbie Kendall for the ball. Witter also added the PAT for a 28-0 lead.
“It was like a jump ball,” Witter said. “It was a good ball by Blake. It was hard for the defensive back.”
The defense wasn’t through. Levi Bloxton picked off a Herman pass at the Carson 35, and it took the Senators just two plays to cash in.
On second-and-1 from the Carson 44, Plattsmier lofted a pass down the middle to Witter who got by the Panthers’ secondary.
“They were playing the run, and we caught them,” Plattsmier said.
Carson tacked on TD runs by Sawyers and Jeremy Cannon plus a 33-yard field goal by Witter in the second half.
The offense chalked up 461 yards, 324 on the ground and 137 through the air. Carson scored on eight of its 11 possessions.
“They played very well,” North Valleys coach Ty Gregg said. “We gave them a lot of stuff (interceptions). You can’t turn the ball over against a good team like Carson.”