Douglas High football

Tigers looking to double 2022 win total against Elko

Douglas High quarterback Jackson Ovard calls a play in the huddle during the Tigers’ preseason scrimmage against Galena.

Douglas High quarterback Jackson Ovard calls a play in the huddle during the Tigers’ preseason scrimmage against Galena.
Photo by Carter Eckl.

Douglas High football pounced on Argonaut for a 40-0 win Friday in Jackson, California.

Now, the Tigers turn their attention to a Northern Nevada Class 3A foe in Elko, who will visit Minden on Friday.

Elko will bring an offense that showed ability to create big plays in its opening week loss to Skyview (Nampa, Idaho), 29-26.

“They are going to be very, very physical,” said Douglas High coach Kyle Mays. “They’re going to play traditional, smash-mouth football. … They have a quarterback who can throw it too.”

Elko sophomore quarterback Ethan Kraintz threw touchdowns of 74, 70 and 50 yards last week. Elko also rushed for 192 yards on 31 carries.

Defensively, Elko will run a 3-4 front similar to what Douglas runs.

Friday night, Douglas High football will induct its next class into its Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony will take place pregame, prior to kickoff. 

Impressive start

There were plenty of positive takeaways from the Tigers win.

Douglas started 1-0 last year before dropping its next eight games, but Mays said Friday’s win felt different.

The first place to look is the Tiger offense, which moved the ball consistently.

Trace Estes started his senior year with an immediate impact, hauling in seven catches for 111 yards and two touchdowns.

“He ran track (in the spring) to get faster and that showed,” said Mays. “He’s put in a lot of work to run his routes right. … You give Trace space, he is not afraid of contact or to cut across the middle.”

One of Estes’ touchdowns saved the Tigers from a potential interception in the end zone as the senior wideout swiped a 50/50 ball from his defender for the score.

His ability to handle hits has always impressed Mays, dating back to his freshman year when he got “waxed” on a play by McQueen and kept moving his feet forward.

His quarterback, junior Jackson Ovard, has transitioned into the starting spot after Owen Evans suffered an injury in the preseason.

Mays said Ovard was always going to compete for the starting spot, but some of the throws he put together Friday night dazzled his head coach.

“The kid has put in so much work, even before Owen went down,” said Mays. “His arm strength, his accuracy, his confidence throwing the ball, especially downfield. He’s been exceptional.”

Defensively, the Tigers had eight tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks as a team.

Seniors Aaron Tekansik and Kyle Koontz caught the eye of Mays on defense.

“He’s (Tekansik) a smart kid. Studies a lot. Talks with coach (Ryan) Moglich a lot,” said Mays.

Tekansik had seven tackles while Koontz posted a sack and a half along with six tackles.

“The one who stood out the most on the defensive line was Kyle Koontz,” said Mays. “Kyle has put in a tremendous amount of work to get ready for this season.”

One of the biggest positives for Mays is that the added work has still allowed Koontz to stay solid in his gap and maintain his position on the field.

Of course, hauling in three catches on offense allows everyone to notice the 6-foot-4 tight end’s hands as well.

Douglas will be looking for its first 2-0 start since 2019.


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