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Tigers, Wolves are ready to rumble


The rival squads will meet up Friday at Tualatin High School

by: DAN BROOD - CATCHING ON -- Tualatin senior receiver Nick Hines has 31 receptions on the season.TUALATIN — OK, both teams are saying that it’s just another game.

Maybe so.

But it’s also a game that very likely will be filled with a lot of intensity, a lot of passion, played in front of a loud, large, enthusiastic crowd.

And, as usual, the outcome could have a big effect on the race for the Pacific Conference championship.

The Tigard and Tualatin high school football teams will write another chapter in their spirited rivalry when they meet Friday in a Pacific Conference football game set to start at 7 p.m. at Tualatin High School.

“It’s always a good game,” Tigard senior tight end/linebacker Jake Biglow said. “It’s a rivalry. Oh yeah, it will be fun.”

“Of course, our kids are looking forward to it,” Tualatin coach Rob Hastin said. “With any sport, when we play Tigard, it’s intense. The teams really get into it.”

Tigard, which is ranked No. 2 in the OSAA power rankings, comes into Friday’s game with an overall record of 5-0 and a Pacific Conference mark of 3-0, which puts the Tigers all alone atop the conference standings.

The Timberwolves are 3-2 on the season and 2-1 in conference play, which puts them in a tie with Glencoe for second place in the league standings.

That sets up Friday’s game as a key contest — between the rivals — in Pacific Conference play.

by: DAN BROOD - FAST TIGER -- Senior Daren Rodrigues (11) is one of the Tigers' many big play threats.But both sides say Friday’s game is no bigger than any other game.

“It’s game No. 6 for us,” Biglow said. “We’re going to go out and fly around, like normal.”

“They’re our next opponent and this is our next game,” Hastin said. “Each game is extremely important to us. We’re looking for improvement every week. This is another step for us.”

Tigard has come away with impressive wins over Tualatin in each of the past two seasons. Tigard triumphed 35-7 in 2011 and, last year, the Tigers got a 41-0 win.

“I’m excited to see if they’ve stepped up from last year,” Tigard senior nose guard Jacob Mullen said. “We’re looking forward to it.”

The past two meetings between the rivals have been played at Tigard. The Wolves are happy to have this year’s contest on their home field.

“That’s exciting for us,” Hastin said. “And it’s great for the community.”

And, the homestanding Wolves know they’re in for a challenge when they take on the Tigers this year.

“Tigard is a very fine football team,” Hastin said.

The Tigers have been nearly unstoppable on offense, scoring at an average of 51.2 points a game.

Tigard has boasted a balanced offensive attack this year.

The Tiger passing game features senior quarterback Jett Even, who has completed 46 of 75 pass attempts for 1,022 yards and 14 touchdowns with just one interception. Senior Daren Rodrigues is Tigard’s top receiver with 18 catches for 518 yards and four touchdowns. Tigard has other big-play receiving threats in senior Bruin Campbell, junior Brady McGetrick and junior Sam Inos. Biglow and fellow senior tight end Nick Duron have been big targets in the red zone.

Senior Manu Rasmussen is the Tigers’ leading rusher with 575 yards and eight touchdowns on 47 carries.

Tigard also has a stingy defense that has allowed just 10.6 points a game.

The Tualatin offense is led by senior quarterback Brandon Shroyer, who has been a double threat this season. Shroyer has completed 57 of 97 pass attempts for 735 yards and eight touchdowns. He has also rushed for 224 yards and two more scores.

Senior receiver Nick Hines is Shroyer’s favorite target. He has 31 receptions for 353 yards and four touchdowns. He also has a punt return for a score. Senior Nique Reid has 10 catches for 123 yards and a TD.

Senior Ryan Wisner has been a rushing and receiving weapon for the Wolves. He has eight receptions for 157 yards and three touchdowns while also rushing for 189 yards, on 30 carries, with two more TDs.

Junior Eli Robinson is Tualatin’s leading rusher on the season. Despite missing two games, he has carried the ball 66 times for 331 yards and a pair of touchdowns.

Robinson missed last Friday’s game at Newberg while dealing with a bout of pneumonia, but the Wolves are hoping to have him back this week.

“He’s doing everything he can to be ready to get out there,” Hastin said.