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Tigers start off fast and win big

Tigard will now host Canby in a second-round clash Friday


TIGARD — After a week off, the Tigard High School football team was ready to go right from the start of its state playoff opener.

Wow, were the Tigers ever ready to go.

Tigard, scoring eight touchdowns in the first 21 minutes of the contest, jumped out to a 54-0 lead on its way to posting a 67-35 victory over Reynolds in a Class 6A state playoff first-round game played Friday at Tigard High School.

“As was the case with every team that had a bye, our players were looking forward to this game for two weeks,” Tigard coach Craig Ruecker said. “Our starters were excited to get out there and play. And it was exciting, in the playoffs, to be able to put our back-up players in with four minutes to go in the first half. Everyone got a lot of playing time.”

Reynolds, the No. 3 team out of the Mt. Hood Conference, finished its season with a final record of 5-5.

Tigard, the Pacific Conference champion, improved to 9-1 on the season with the victory. The Tigers also advance to the second round of the state playoffs.

They’ll host Canby Friday in a second-round playoff match-up set to start at 7 p.m. at Tigard High School.

In Friday’s upcoming contest, the Tigers will likely be looking to get off to the same type of start that they had in the postseason opener with Reynolds.

Tigard grabbed a 7-0 lead less than a minute into the game thanks to a 59-yard touchdown run by senior Zach Floyd.

Floyd added a 41-yard touchdown run soon after, upping the Tiger lead to 14-0 with 7 minutes and 43 seconds left in the first quarter.

Junior running back Manu Rasmussen added a 3-yard scoring run with 5:42 left in the period and junior fullback A.J. Hotchkins scored on a 25-yard run to give Tigard a 27-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.

The Tigers kept rolling in the second quarter.

A 2-yard TD pass from junior quarterback Jett Even to junior tight end Jake Biglow upped the margin to 33-0 one play into the period.

Even then completed a 26-yard TD pass to senior Anthony Consolo to up the lead to 40-0 with 9:00 remaining in the first half.

The Tigard defense then came up with a big play, helping force an incomplete pass as Reynolds faced fourth-and-goal at the Tiger 2-yard line.

On the very next play, Floyd sprinted 98 yards for another touchdown run, increasing the margin to 47-0 with 5:04 left before halftime.

Rasmussen added a 24-yard touchdown run to give Tigard a 54-0 lead at the intermission.

In the second half, Tigard sophomore Landon Floyd scored a touchdown on an 84-yard kickoff return.

Sophomore Sam Inos capped off the scoring for the Tigers with a 33-yard TD run coming with 6:37 left to play in the game.

“Our young men played very well,” Ruecker said. “We had a lot of good plays.”

Tigard, as a team, had 650 yards of total offense in the win, with 436 yards coming on the ground.

Zach Floyd led the Tigard rushing attack with 256 yards on only eight carries.

He also had 76 yards on a pair of receptions. Rasmussen added 43 rushing yards on four carries.

Even completed eight of 13 pass attempts for 185 yards and a pair of scores.

For the Tigard defense, junior Bruin Campbell intercepted a pair of Reynolds passes. Inos and Zach Floyd had one interception apiece. Consolo recovered a pair of Raider fumbles and Tigard junior Nick Dauphinais had a quarterback sack.

Canby, the No. 2 team out of the Three Rivers League, comes into Friday’s second-round state playoff match with an overall record of 6-4. The teams have already played this season, with Tigard scoring a 41-13 win over the Cougars in a game played Aug. 31 at Canby High School.

“That seems like a season ago,” Ruecker said. “Canby has gotten a lot better since then, and we’ve gotten a lot better since then. Canby is on a roll and it should be a good football game.”

The Cougars boast a strong running attack out of its Wing-T formation.

“Any time you play against the Wing-T, you have to be disciplined and read your keys on defense,” Ruecker said. “On offense, we need to do what we’ve been doing all season long — get strong play from our offensive line so our playmakers can make plays.”

The winner of Friday’s Canby-at-Tigard game will face either Sunset or Central Catholic in the quarterfinals.




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