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Tigers have a blast at Sertoma Classic all-star football game

by Dave Price

If there had been a betting line on last Friday’s 19th annual Sertoma Classic Northern Nevada all-star football game, the West would have been an under dog.

At least if you ask Douglas High School graduate Brandon Griffith.

“Some people predicted the East was going to walk all over us because of all the talent they had,” Griffith said.

The West paid no attention to any of that talk. They simply went out and pounded out a 35-0 victory over the East in a game played at Reno High School.

Playing physical football was the key, according to Griffith.

“We talked about hitting. Our D line was just huge so we knew we were going to come out hitting.

“We wanted to play smash mouth football … It’s hard to use your talent when you’re on your back.”

That East defensive line was led by Bishop Manogue’s Michael Yenick (6-2, 237), Tahoe-Truckee’s Brad Noel (6-1, 270) and Joe Andrews (6-5, 240) of Douglas.

“Joe did a real decent job over there,” Griffith said. “(Elko’s Ryan) Still got around him once, which was kind of scary, but (McQueen linebacker Matt) White made a great play to run him down.”

Andrews and Griffith were joined at the Classic by fellow Douglas grads Kyle Baker and Josh Wilcox. All four were instrumental last fall for the Tigers, who went 3-7 and got to the Northern 4A playoffs.

Griffith, who passed for 1,101 yards and nine touchdowns for Douglas last fall, shared time at quarterback with McQueen’s Brian Fritz in the first half.

“I had a blast, it was one of the funnest games I’ve ever played in,” Griffith said. “The whole week was a blast. Getting to know those guys from all the other schools … they’re all good guys.”