Gladstone continues dominant in the TVC

Gladstone last week continued dominant in Tri-Valley Conference football, routing Molalla 42-7 in a Thursday night game played at Molalla.

It was the third runaway win for the Gladiators in as many league games. They upended La Salle 40-6 in their league opener and they won 47-3 in an Oct. 4 game with Estacada.

The Gladiators (5-2, 3-0) were tied with North Marion (5-2, 3-0) in first place in the TVC heading into this Saturday’s game at Madras (2-5, 0-3).

The Gladiators took no hostages at Molalla, running off no fewer than 86 plays and piling up 464 yards in offense.

They were also impressive on defense, containing the Indians to a net offense of 137 yards and holding the Indians scoreless until the fourth quarter.

Molalla quarterback Austin Alexander completed only 6-of-30 passes for 28 yards.

Five different Gladstone players scored touchdowns.

The Gladiators did most of the damage on the ground, where they amassed 435 yards and scored five touchdowns on 78 carries.

Gladstone had possession of the ball for 32-1/2 minutes of the 48-minute game.

Gladstone unveiled a new running back in 5-10, 170-pound junior Cooper Nelson. Nelson, who had rushed sparingly in previous games, led a stable of Gladstone running backs, picking up 157 yards and a touchdown on 27 carries.

Gladstone junior running back Zach Smith carried 14 times for 87 times and Gladstone junior running back Handsome Smith rushed 12 times for 76 yards and a touchdown.

Gladstone senior helmsman Austin Galvin passed for a touchdown and rushed 10 times for 47 yards and two touchdowns.

Also scoring for the Gladiators were Andrew Conway, on a 13-yard pass from Galvin; and Jake Jubb, on a 12-yard run.

Molalla’s only touchdown was scored on an 86-yard fumble recovery return by Isaiah Ganz.

Molalla slipped to 1-2 in conference (3-4 overall) with the loss.

La Salle Prep finally put it all together last week, blanking Madras 29-0.

“Our schedule has been a very tough one, but we’ve continued to work towards getting better each week,” said La Salle coach Tim Bowman. “I think this was our best week thus far.”

Bowman singled out quarterback Mike Duarte, senior leader Ryan Cavanagh and lineman Nick Johnson for their contributions to the Falcon victory.

“Mike played well at QB,” he said. “He threw the ball well and made some things happens with his feet when things weren’t there for him....

“Ryan is playing very well on both sides of the ball and is also a great leader for this team....

“We had a number of younger players step up in roles that they hadn’t been asked to play in the past, as we had three starters out of this game due to illness or injury. Nick Johnson probably played his best game in the line.”

La Salle (2-5, 1-2) returns to action this Friday, hosting Estacada (1-6, 1-2).

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