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Reynolds offense too much again for slow-starting Quakers

by: JIM CLARK Franklin quarterback Josh Nine (right) hands off to Cody Croydon during Friday's game with Reynolds.

Franklin High kept hitting the metaphorical snooze button Friday night, dozing through its home-opening loss to Reynolds 45-20.

The Quakers' youth and inexperience on defense couldn't hide from the Raiders' spread offense. Franklin consistently struggled to defend the opponent's three- and four-receiver formations, and allowing scoring in bunches.

In the first half, Franklin watched the visitors from the Mt. Hood Conference rack up the score.

Raiders quarterback Josh Schleining, a 6-2 sophomore, tossed three touchdown passes in the game, two in the first half. Sophomore Quentin Bates, a 6-2 wide receiver, caught one of those TD tosses. The other went to Dallas Karsch, a 6-0 senior, who also scored a short rushing touchdown on the Raiders' first drive.

Unable to come up with anything offensively, Franklin was faced with a 26-0 halftime deficit.

'We're a young team this year,' Franklin coach Richard Lex said. ' A very young team. It took us two hours to wake up.'

Things didn't get easier in the third quarter. Franklin began the second half on defense, and stood by as Schleining threw his third touchdown pass, to Bates, from 32 yards.

'I thought that Josh played awesome,' Reynolds coach Sean Van de Merghel said. 'He did some really great things, and we took advantage of what they gave us. They gave us a lot of opportunities to throw the ball.'

Franklin responded with a nice series of its own to open the third quarter.

The Quakers offense moved down the field, sparked by a screen pass to Damian Woods, a 6-1 senior, who bulldozed his way into the red zone. Unfortunately, the drive was cut short by a Quakers fumble, giving the ball right back to the Raiders. And Reynolds made the Portland Interscholastic League team 5A team pay. Demontrial Spinks, a 6-0 junior, scored on a 66-yard blast up the middle, putting the Raiders ahead 39-0.

Josh Nine, Franklin's 6-3 senior quarterback, hit on 19 of 36 passes for 211 yards and had a touchdown pass to wide receiver Dominic Draheim, a 6-3 junior, early in the fourth quarter.

Woods had eight catches for 88 yards, and also carried seven times for 24 yards.

Franklin had its way the rest of the game, with the exception of a fake punt called by Reynolds deep in its territory. Spinks took the ball the around the end for a 63-yard touchdown scamper, which gave the Raiders a 45-6 cushion.

This was a bit of a rivalry game for these two teams. Last year, when they faced each other, Class 6A Reynolds pulled ahead by four touchdowns in the opening minutes, and the teams traded scores for the remainder of the game. In that 2010 offensive explosion, the squads combined for more than 1,100 yards of offense, and the Raiders hung on for the win 62-48.

'We've picked this fight for two years now,' Lex said. 'We wanted to compete up. They are a school with twice the student body (size) of ours, and we wanted to pick a fight.'

In the closing minutes of the rematch, Franklin scored on an eight-yard rush by Ali Alshujery, a 5-9 senior. The Quakers recovered the onside kick, which led to a seven-yard touchdown rumble by junior Joe Aguilar, a 5-10 junior.

'We'll feel pretty confident in this team by the time we hit league (games),' Lex said. 'We will be a good football team because we're playing stronger caliber teams.'