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PREP FOOTBALL: Tigers near perfect in win over Tornado

Tigard advances to semifinals, 42-0 over North Medford


by: PAMPLIN MEDIA GROUP: DAN BROOD - Tigard senior Manu Rasmussen is on his way to scoring on a 69-yard run in the Tigers' 42-0 state quarterfinal win over North Medford.It's said that nobody's perfect.

That may be true, but the Tigard High football team sure seemed to come pretty darn close to perfection.

The Tigers turned in another high-efficiency attack on offense while totally stifling North Medford on defense Friday and posted a perfectly dominant 42-0 win in an OSAA Class 6A quarterfinal game at Tigard.

“We did well,” said Tigard senior defensive end Joe Lobbato, who had a quarterback sack and forced a fumble. “We had a few mistakes, but we'll try and clean those up. We want to get to the championship. That's been our goal — to get there.”

“This means a lot to us,” said Tigard senior running back/cornerback Manu Rasmussen, who rushed for more than 200 yards and a pair of touchdowns. “Our goal each year is to be practicing on Thanksgiving. Now we're going to be doing that. This was definitely fun. We work so hard, and this is the reward every week.”

North Medford, the Southern Oregon Conference champion, finished 10-2.

Tigard, the Pacific Conference champion, improved to 12-0. The Tigers will meet unbeaten Central Catholic next Saturday at Jeld-Wen Field.

“We're very excited about that,” Tigard senior lineman Alex Anohkin said. “That's going to be a great game.”

Maybe so, but after the commanding performance against North Medford, it looks as though the Tigers are likely ready for most anything.

Tigard limited the Black Tornado to 97 yards of total offense while rolling up 459 yards. And, of course, the Tigard defense reveled in getting the shutout.

“That means a ton to us,” Tigard senior linebacker Jake Biglow said. “It's always nice to get a win, but it's really nice to know you can keep a team from scoring.”

“We work hard on defense,” Tigard senior fullback/linebacker A.J. Hotchkins said. “This was good.”

North Medford, on its first possession, marched 53 yards — providing more than half of its offensive output for the game — to the Tigard 29-yard line. But a bad snap prevented the Black Tornado to from even getting off a 47-yard field-goal attempt.

by: PAMPLIN MEDIA GROUP: DAN BROOD - Tigard junior Sam Inos avoids North Medford senior Micah Brown on his way to scoring on a 17-yard run in the Tigers' quarterfinal win.The Tigers quickly took over from there.

Hotchkins scored on a 13-yard run up the middle to give Tigard a 7-0 lead with 5:27 left in the first quarter.

On the next Tigard possession, Rasmussen sprinted 69 yards for a touchdown that pushed the margin to 14-0 with 1:03 still remaining in the quarter.

The Tigers opened the second quarter scoring with a 17-yard touchdown run on a reverse sweep to the left side of the field by junior receiver Sam Inos.

On Tigard's next offensive possession, a 26-yard pass from senior quarterback Jett Even to senior receiver Daren Rodrigues set up junior Tyler Walker's 14-yard touchdown run, which gave the home team a 28-0 lead with 3:35 left in the second quarter.

In the second half, Tigard got a 22-yard touchdown run by Rasmussen and a 6-yard TD pass from Even to Rodrigues to cap off the scoring.

“This was great,” Tigard senior tight end/defensive end Nick Duron said. “We all did our job. We got the shutout. We want to do that every game, but it's really nice to do it in the quarterfinals.”

Tigard ran for 319 yards on 49 carries. Rasmussen had 203 yards on 17 carries.

“The line did a great job,” Rasmussen said. “On the touchdowns, I didn't even get touched.”

“We're all brothers,” said Anohkin, who teams with seniors Nathan Wick, Janak Ward, Byron Hammick Jr., sophomore Conner Crist and tight ends Biglow and Duron on Tigard's offensive line. “We love blocking for those guys. Everyone does their job.”

Junior Landon Floyd added 47 yards on six carries, and Walker rushed for 38 yards on six carries.

by: PAMPLIN MEDIA GROUP: DAN BROOD - Tigard senior defensive end Joe Lobbato brings down North Medford senior running back Micah Brown for a loss.Even completed 8 of 10 pass attempts for 140 yards. Rodrigues had three catches for 48 yards.

For the Tigard defense, Lobbato had a quarterback sack, three other tackles for losses and a forced fumble. Duron had a sack and another tackle for a loss. Senior Matt Hilliard intercepted a North Medford pass, freshman Tyler Cancellosi had a sack, Biglow recovered a fumble and senior Jacob Mullen had a tackle for a loss.

The Tigard defense also held North Medford to minus-6 rushing yards on 25 attempts. Three Black Tornado quarterbacks combined to complete 9 of 24 pass attempts for 103 yards.

For a much more complete game story, more photos and a look at Tigard's upcoming state playoff semifinal game with Central Catholic, see the Nov. 28 issue of the Tigard/Tualatin Times.