Douglas drops 42-0 game at Damonte Ranch
RENO — The Douglas football team needs a win on Friday night to have a shot to make the NIAA 4A playoffs.
The Tigers dropped a 42-0 decision Thursday night at Damonte Ranch (4-0 in Sierra League). The loss coupled with Wooster’s win over Carson, sets up a win-to-have-a-chance game at home against Carson.
The Tigers had chances early in the game to get the upper edge against the Mustangs, as the Tiger defense recovered two fumbles on Damonte’s first two possessions. Christian Janota and Brady Dufloth had recoveries for the Tigers.
The Tigers couldn’t get the offense going, however, being forced to punt on both possessions.
On Damonte’s third possession, the Mustangs went to their workhorse, running back Ashton Hayes. Hayes, a sophomore, scored on a 44-yard run to for a 7-0 lead with 4:36 to play in the first quarter.
Douglas looked to have tied the game when Issac Shaver hit Cameron Swain on an 84-yard touchdown, but an illegal man down field penalty negated the play. Two plays later Shaver would get hit and fumble, setting up a 7-yard scramble by Damonte quarterback Ethan Kulpin and 14-0 Mustang lead.
Douglas moved the ball into Damonte territory but Damonte’s defense would sack Shaver and set up a fourth-and-29 for the Tigers.
With the ball back after a punt, Hayes broke off a 61-yard run before being tackled at the three. He would score a few plays later to make it 21-0 with 8:16 to play in the half.
After a Shaver interception, Douglas got the ball back when Swain picked off Kulpin deep inside Douglas territory. It was the Tigers’ third forced turnover of the game. However, the Damonte defense held and forced a punt. Kulpin would then throw a 41-yard pass to give the Mustangs a 28-0 lead with 3:56 to play in the half.
After Shaver was sacked and the Tigers turned the ball over on downs, Damonte got the game to running clock on a Hayes one-yard run with 30 seconds left in the half.
Hayes — when he probably should have been on the bench — would add an 84-yard score with 5:40 left in the game to give Damonte its final score.
Douglas would get an interception by Brandon Wright in the third quarter. It was the Tigers fourth turnover of the game. Running back Trevor Kruger, who was held in check for a large part of the game, had a couple of nice runs in the second half for the Tigers, who managed about 100 yards of total offense, unofficially.
The playoff scenarios are complicated heading into the final week of the season. Making matters worse are the unknown: Galena plays Bishop Manogue on Monday; after the whooping cough outbreak at Bishop Manogue caused the postponement of Thursday’s game.
Wooster and Galena each have two wins, if Douglas (1-3) gets to two wins the playoff scenario is down to defensive points. (The Record-Courier will have more information by mid-week). If Galena beats Manogue or Damonte and gets to three wins, the Grizzlies are in. If Wooster beats Manogue next week, the Colts are in with three wins.
Carson, with its loss to Wooster on Thursday, has been eliminated. The Senators will try to spoil the Tigers’ season when they come to Douglas at 7 p.m. Friday.