Douglas football routs North Valleys
Normally when your offense grinds out 271 yards on the ground and your defense records seven sacks, you wouldn’t expect to hear words like “ugly” and “flat” coming out of the mouths of the coaches and players after the game.
But this isn’t your normal team.
Spike Agosta rushed for 216 yards on 21 carries with four touchdowns and caught a 14-yard touchdown pass to account for all of Douglas’ points in a 35-9 win over North Valleys in Northern 4A football action in Reno Friday night.
“We’ll take it,” Douglas head coach Mike Rippee said. “I’m probably being picky, but we didn’t play a clean game. Really it was the first time this season we came out flat.
“You hope that when that happens that you don’t get beat. It’s a credit to these kids for coming up and doing what they had to do to win.”
Douglas turned the ball over four times in the game, and North Valleys was able to turn two of those into their only points of the night.
“We have to get away from the turnovers,” Rippee said. “We are setting up the opposing offense with easy scores.
“We can’t continue to play that kind of football and be as successful as we want to be.”
And there it is.
It’s not about what happened. It’s about what could have happened. Which is perhaps why the Tigers have shown marked improvement, especially on defense, in each of their first four games. Douglas has been learning from its mistakes. All of them.
“Every week somebody new is stepping up and doing the job,” Rippee said. “The effort was there tonight. The emotion, not as much. It was an ugly win, but I’ll take that over a beautiful loss any day.”
It was the defense that stepped up Friday night, sacking North Valleys quarterbacks Edgar Macias and Spencer Cassinelli seven times combined and holding the Panthers to just 58 yards rushing.
“It’s all about intensity,” said Douglas’ Tyson Estes, who was in on three of the sacks himself. “The coaches put in our schemes and everything, but our defense flies around and I thought we did well tonight.”
Kyle Luken, Mike Buffo, Bryan Barnard, Brent Koontz and Tyree Holdridge all got in on the sack party as well, while defensive backs Tim Senger, D.J. Brady and Bryan Brady each played significant roles in shutting the Panthers down through the air.
North Valleys finished the night with 146 passing yards, but 54 of those came on late drives when Douglas had most of its second-stringers in.
The offensive line of Datin Whatcott, Trevor Freitas, Koontz, Estes, Luken, Bryan Brady and Henry O’Hair was once again stellar, opening up wide holes for the Tiger runners all night.
“We always want to be tougher than our opponents,” Estes said. “Our whole thing is to get them off the ball and get a great push. Today we kind of lost some mental focus toward the end of the game, but a win is a win and we’ll take it.”
Tiger quarterback Roman Davis was 7-of-14 for 46 yards and the touchdown pass to Agosta. North Valleys was not able to force a Douglas punt until just over eight minutes remained in the game.
Keenan Copp carried the ball five times for 26 yards to round out the Tigers’ ground game.