Fallon rolls over Dayton, prepares for Elko
Nick Delgado loves football.
“Pancaking people,” Delgado said. “You get to run people. That’s the best part of being a lineman.”
Delgado, a senior, and the rest of the line continued dominating the line of scrimmage this season, making Dayton its newest casualty. The Greenwave rolled up 361 yards on offense and held the Dust Devils to 48 yards in shutting them out, 55-0, Friday night on homecoming at the Edward Arciniega Athletic Complex.
“It all starts in the trenches and we have to work hard,” Delgado said. “We practice hard and we’re a good team. We come together and we know who’s doing what.”
Senior Sean McCormick scored four touchdowns on six carries for 182 yards (30.3-yard average), junior quarterback Elijah Jackson completed 5 of 6 passes for 57 yards and a touchdown, and Brock Richardson hauled in one receiving touchdown and returned an interception for a touchdown in the blowout victory.
“We have one of the best lines in the state. They make everything look easy,” McCormick said. “They’re driving guys 10 yards down field and holes are open. It’s nice running behind them. In short yardage, you’re going to have that good push.”
And while the offense racked up 304 yards on the ground, most coming in the first half, the defense allowed only one first down in the first half. Hill credits the both the offensive and defensive lines, which begin with Delgado and senior Ben Dooley.
“Those guys are the unsung heroes of our football team,” Hill said. “They do a really good job of just dominating up front and they’ve been doing it all year long. We’ve got some seniors up front who’ve played a lot and we have Ben, a Division I kid, and we’re going to be able to run the football. They pass pro well. They do a good job protecting the quarterback.”
The junior varsity players stepped in the second half to help sustain the shutout. The plan was to put in the JV players once Fallon got a comfortable lead and Hill was pleased with their performance.
“They didn’t have a game this week and we wanted to get them some playing time in the second half,” he said. “They did a good job sticking one in the end zone and not allowing them to score. It was their job to keep the shutout and they did.”
Fallon (6-0) turns its attention to Elko (5-1) this week as three weeks remain in the season. The Indians lost their first game of the year over the weekend when Truckee posted the shutout. Fallon is the only undefeated team left in the league while Truckee and Elko are tied for second. A win over Elko guarantees that Fallon will finish no worse than second in the league.
“When we go up there, anything can happen and we have to play our best football,” Hill said. “They just got on a roll (began the year with a five-game winning streak). Coach Sellers does a great job and has them believing they can win. They have some seniors, too, and a couple good running backs and good lineman who played last year. They’re going to be a confident team. We’re going to be at their place and I’m sure they’re going to think they have a shot. We’ve actually done pretty well at Elko. We know what to expect. We know all about the drive. At 7 o’clock this Friday, we have to be ready to play.”
Last week’s game against Dayton couldn’t have started better for Fallon.
After forcing winless Dayton to punt to open the game, Fallon scored on its first offensive play. Jackson found Richardson open deep down the Dayton sideline, lofting a 40-yard touchdown pass 58 seconds into the game.
The second series for both teams mirrored the first. Dayton punted after three plays and then it was McCormick’s turn for the quick strike. The senior running back scampered for a 65-yard touchdown run with 9:15 left in the quarter to give Fallon a 13-0 lead.
Tommy McCormick’s touchdown on the next series was called back but Fallon scored four plays later for its third touchdown of the game. Jackson found Trey Rooks open for a 5-yard gain and then Sean McCormick bounced off to the weak side of the field for a 20-yard score with 5:40 left. Richardson’s 13-yard run on the next drive set up his second score of the game, a 10-yard run to the left pylon for a 26-0 advantage.
McCormick’s interception in the second quarter set up Fallon’s next score when he brought the ball back to Dayton’s 20-yard line 11 seconds into the quarter. McCormick scored on the second play of the series, a 25-yard run with 10:52 left in the first half with Fallon up 33-0.
“It was really important,” Dooley said about starting off right and ending the night with a win. “It was our homecoming night. Everyone comes down to see us and we’re going to show them what it’s all about. To get a shutout, it’s huge.”
After a failed fake punt, Dayton couldn’t stop Fallon’s offense. On second and 16 from the Dust Devils’ 33, McCormick scored his fourth touchdown of the game to initiate the running clock with eight minutes left in the half. With Fallon up 40-0, Richardson picked off Dayton on its 30-yard line and ran it back for the touchdown to put Fallon up 47-0. A bad snap resulted in a safety before the end of the half as Fallon took a 49-0 lead into the locker room.
With the junior varsity players taking most of the snaps in the second half, the defense held on for the shutout and Fallon’s offense, under JV quarterback Avery Strasdin, scored in the third quarter when Levi Andrews scored from 3 yards out for Fallon’s final score.