FOOTBALL PREVIEW — Reynolds hosts Beaverton and David Douglas hosts South Salem in other East County matchups

by: THE OUTLOOK: FILE PHOTO - Gresham running back Devauntae Hoffman should get another busy night Friday against Lincoln. He gained 172 yards and scored twice in the Gophers opening game win over Wilson last week.

Gresham’s football team gets a chance to revenge this week, traveling back to Lincoln High where the Cardinals put up some big fourth-quarter plays to take a 28-14 win in last year’s playoff opener.

“We’ve talked about it, and the kids that were there remember it,” Gophers coach Todd Nagel said. “We were tied 14-14 late in the third, and walked away feeling that we had let one get away.”

Gresham is looking for a better result this week, and a second straight win over a Portland school after opening with a 27-10 victory over Wilson last Friday.

This week’s matchup is a contrast in styles between the run-and-gun Cardinals and the ground-and-pound Gophers.

Lincoln put the ball in the air more than 50 times during its 62-35 shootout loss to Century, while Gresham piled up more than 300 yards on the ground in its win over Wilson.

Lincoln QB John Williams makes the Cardinals attack work, tossing five TDs in the opener.

“He’s pretty dynamic and when he gets away from pressure he makes things happen,” Nagel said. “They’ll complete some balls on us, it’s our job to keep them in front of us and tackle well. We’ll need to limit the number of big plays.”

Gresham’s ground game relies heavily on halfback Devauntae Hoffman, who went for 172 yards and scored twice against Wilson.

“He’s strong and low to the ground. He’s a hard guy to bring down,” Nagel said. “You only have to give him a little crease, and he can make some things happen on his own.”

Gresham doesn’t need to be reminded of the new importance of the nonleague schedule. Last year, the Gophers finished second in the Mount Hood with a solid 7-2 record, but an early-season loss to Sunset cost them precious points in the state’s RPI-rankings and sent them on the road for the playoffs.

“Every game figures into that formula, so you have to get your best people out there and try to win each week or you’re going to hurt yourself at the end of the season,” Nagel said.

Friday’s game has a later 7:30 p.m. kickoff at Lincoln High.

Beaverton visits Reynolds at Mt. Hood CC. The Raiders are coming off a big 52-14 win over Hillsboro — a game that saw Reynolds reach the end zone four times in the first quarter.

David Douglas hosts South Salem in the other East County home game.

In out of town games, Barlow travels across the river to take on Metro-power Sunset, while Centennial is on the road against reigning 6A champion Lake Oswego.

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