Crimson Tide rally from last week's loss to beat Mac, 28-13

Coming off a frustrating loss to crosstown rival Century that snapped a three-game winning streak, the Glencoe football team knew they needed to raise their game last Friday night against HILLSBORO TRIBUNE PHOTO: CHASE ALLGOOD - Glencoe senior quarterback Avery Elrod  throws a pass during last Friday's Pacific Conference football game against McMinnville.

The Crimson Tide did exactly that, powering up the run game and dominating the line of scrimmage in a pivotal 28-13 victory that kept Glencoe in a tie for second place in the Pacific Conference standings and kept alive the team’s chances of hosting a first-round game when the Class 6A state playoffs begin next month.

“It was a great win for us, in a lot of different ways,” Glencoe coach Steve Jones said. “Last week we were riding a three-game win streak and Century was sitting at 1-5 — sometimes that plays with the kids’ heads a little bit. We just weren’t ourselves and (Century) played a great game.

“The thing about the McMinnville game was that our kids knew they needed to raise their game to get a win.”

The Tide (5-3 overall, 4-2 Pacific Conference) put memories of last week behind them and turned in a punishing offensive performance and a smothering defensive effort. Glencoe rushed for 364 yards in the game, and the defense forced two turnovers while holding McMinnville scoreless over a 36-minute stretch between the first and fourth quarters.

Junior running back Tom Ward busted a 20-yard touchdown run midway through the first quarter and senior Kainoa Hanchett ran in the two-point conversion for an early 8-0 lead.

McMinnville (4-4, 2-4) responded with a 7-yard scoring run from Gage Gubrud near the end of the first quarter, but the Grizzlies wouldn’t crack the end zone again until the 1:44 mark of the fourth quarter. By then, Glencoe had built a 28-7 lead that was never in serious jeopardy.

“In the first half, you never know what they’re going to do,” Jones said of McMinnville. “We just took it one series at a time and tried to slow them down and force some turnovers, which we were able to do.

“A lot of it was just finding out what we could do against them — put them in situations and see how they react or don’t react, then make adjustments from that. Fortunately we were able to move the ball through the air and move the ball on the ground.”

Ward staked the Crimson Tide to a 15-6 lead at halftime with his 16-yard touchdown run in the second quarter, and Hanchett did most of the damage in the second half. The senior speedster scored on runs of 3 and 7 yards in the fourth quarter to extend the lead to 28-7, and the rest was academic.

Hanchett rushed for 147 yards and two touchdowns on 24 carries, while Ward ran for 121 yards and two scores on 14 attempts. Quarterback Avery Elrod didn’t have to throw the ball much, but he did run three times for 32 yards and drew praise from his head coach.

“Avery Elrod had probably his best game of the season,” Jones said. “He threw one interception, but he knew what he did wrong. I felt like he was in control of the offense and making good decisions.”

Defensively, Hanchett and Kaelen Stow each had an interception, while Devin Jones and Josh Bryant each had a sack.

The victory sets up a crucial conference showdown tonight against second-place Tualatin (5-3, 4-2). Neither team can catch league-leading Tigard, but the winner of tonight’s game will finish second in the final conference standings while the loser takes third place.

“Tualatin has a really good team, just like they always do,” Jones said. “We’re going to their place, plus it’s senior night for them, so there will be a lot of emotion for their guys.

“At this point in the season we’ve got some kids banged up, but so does everybody else. We’re not holding anybody back in this one — this is a vital game. I’m looking forward to it. It should be a good one.”

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