Falcons get it done at Estacada

ESTACADA - Last Friday night was huge for La Salle Prep's second-in-the-state-ranked football team.

With a 34-6 win on a rain-slickened field at Estacada, the Falcons wrapped up only the third undefeated regular season in school history.

Friday's win put the Falcons at 9-0 with the regular season complete.

'I'm proud of our team and our coaches,' said La Salle senior co-captain Erich Regan. 'We're 9-and-0, and that takes a lot of hard work and dedication….'

La Salle last went undefeated in regular-season play in 2007, when the Falcons finished 9-1 (6-0 in the Capital Conference), losing to Sutherlin 28-21 in the second round of the state playoffs, after drawing a first-round bye.

Regan recalled, 'I remember 2007. It was my eighth grade year and I was good friends with a lot of the players. It was a great experience. But it's a lot more fun being a part of it on the field my senior year than watching it as a ball boy when I was an eighth grader.'

The only other time in which a La Salle varsity football team went undefeated on the regular season was in 1995, when the Falcons went 10-1, losing to Central in the Class 3A state quarterfinals.

Regan said of last Friday's win at Estacada: 'It means a lot. It's the first time our senior class has beaten Estacada.'

The Falcons wasted little time taking charge of last Friday's game. La Salle led 15-0 at the end of the first period and the Falcons were up 21-0 at the halftime break.

J.J. Fisher had a big night, rushing 16 times for 183 yards and three touchdowns.

La Salle quarterback Mark Holenstein didn't let the inclement weather or the muddy field bother him. The 6-1, 175-pound junior completed 8-of-12 passes for 126 yards and a touchdown, and he rushed for 56 yards and a touchdown.

Senior linebacker Jake Fiocchi and senior defensive back Colin Meisner had huge defensive games, with 22 tackles between them.

The Falcons host 30th-ranked Yamhill-Carlton (2-7), the No. 4 team from the Cowapa Conference, in this Friday's Class 4A playoffs play-in round.

'We won't overlook them just because they're the No. 4 team from their conference,' said Regan. 'We haven't overlooked any team this season, so we won't in this game.'

Defense saves the day

GLADSTONE - It wasn't at all pretty. But Gladstone defeated Molalla 28-6 in last Friday's grid showdown at Gladstone, and the Gladiators (7-2, 4-1) locked up second place in the Tri-Valley Conference with the victory. Molalla finished 3-2 in conference (5-4 overall) and in third place.

The two teams had no fewer than 10 turnovers between them, as the weather made it difficult to hang onto and pass the rain-greased pigskin.

Defense saved the day for the Gladiators, who spotted the Indians a first-quarter touchdown and trailed most of the game.

It wasn't until the fourth quarter that Gladstone defenders put three touchdowns on the scoreboard and put the game on ice.

The Gladiators went up 7-6 on a short third-quarter touchdown run by Eamon Burrell and an on-target PAT kick by John Thovar.

A.J. Prom and Oscar Sanchez both recovered Molalla fumbles in the end zone for fourth quarter touchdowns that upped the Gladiator lead to 21-6.

And when Ben Hunter picked off a pass and returned it 40 yards to the end zone, the Gladiators were up 28-6, and it was all over but the shouting.

Prom was easily the game's top ground-gainer, netting 106 yards on 24 carries.

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