The Gladiators roll to a 56-14 halftime advantage and coast home from there

Gladstone High School gridmen last Friday took out their frustrations from a Sept. 6 loss to Class 5A Roosevelt on Stayton, manhandling the Eagles 63-14 in a Class 4A mismatch at Stayton.

Junior running back Handsome Smith headed up a balanced Gladiator ground attack that netted 403 yards and seven touchdowns.

Smith picked up 186 yards and scored two touchdowns in just nine trips with the pigskin. His 90-yard sprint to the end zone late in the first quarter put the Gladiators up 21-0 and he added a fourth score on a 13-yard run early in the second quarter that made it 28-0 Gladstone.

Smith also had a 52-yard interception return for a touchdown in the third quarter.

Junior Eric Prom scored twice, on a 55-yard run in the first quarter and on a 4-yard run in the second period. He had five carries for 90 yards in the game.

Gladstone senior quarterback Austin Galvin was a dual threat, completing 8-of-13 passes for 123 yards and a touchdown, and rushing three times for 54 yards and a touchdown. Galvin connected with senior tight end Kyle Wou for a 63-yard touchdown pass play to open the Gladiators’ scoring.

Junior tailback Cooper Nelson and senior wide receiver Michael O’Brian-Haun also scored touchdowns for Gladstone, Nelson in the second quarter, on a 44-yard run; and O’Brien-Haun in the third period, on a 9-yard carry.

The Gladiators were also tough on defense, especially in defending the pass. Stayton quarterback Kyle Schwarm completed just one pass, although he attempted 18.

Handsome Smith and Vincent Rininger both intercepted passes; Andrew Conway intercepted a pass and recovered a Stayton fumble. Trask Telesmanich also recovered an Eagle fumble.

The Gladiators did struggle to slow Stayton 5-8, 165-pound senior Ryan Blythe, who carried 18 times for 240 yards and scored both Stayton touchdowns, on a 91-yard run and on a 66-yard run.

The Gladiators (2-1) could have their hands full this Friday, when they play Philomath (3-0) on the road. The Warriors upended La Salle last Friday, winning 43-7. Philomath and Gladstone both lost in the Class 4A quarterfinals last year, Gladstone in a 10-7 heartbreaker with North Bend, and Philomath in a 35-28 heartbreaker with Cascade.

The La Salle Falcons struggled to stop Philomath quarterback Trey Ecker in last week’s humbling loss to the Warriors. The 6-4, 165-pound junior had a career night throwing the football, completing 14-of-17 passes for 301 yards and five touchdowns.

Ecker threw scoring strikes of 35 and 4 yards to 6-2, 205-pound senior Ben DeSaulnier, 27 and 59 yards to 6-2, 170-pound senior Cole Chambers, and 32 yards to 6-0, 200-pound senior J.P. Parsons.

Meanwhile the Falcons struggled to mount any kind of an offensive threat, picking up a net of just 52 yards rushing and 59 yards passing. Nash Lisac headed the Falcons’ offense, rushing 14 times for 51 yards.

La Salle’s only score came in the fourth quarter, on a 39-fumble recovery return by junior linebacker Joe Kohnstamm.

La Salle (1-2) hosts Banks (3-0) this Friday. Gladstone and La Salle begin Tri-Valley Conference play a week from Friday, playing one another at La Salle.

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