Strawn’s stingy defense is peaking at just the right time as the No. 6 Greyhounds shutdown Bluffdale 52-6 in a game where half the Bobcats offense came on one play.
Bluffdale scored on a 51-yard run, but it was the only wrinkle in Strawn’s defense that limited Bluffdale to 122 total yards and didn’t allow a pass completion.
The Bobcat’s only other positive was having a 26-10 advantage in time of possession, and that was just because Strawn was off to the races on offense taking a 36-6 lead after the first quarter.
David Shugart got things rolling on the opening kickoff with a 64-yard return for a touchdown, and when JW Montgomery booted the first of his five extra-point kicks, it sent a signal over to No. 6 Gordon that Friday’s District 10-1A tilt is for all the marbles.
Montgomery has been sidelined for a month with a wrist injury and wasted no time in making himself known as he gathered in a pass from Chino Hernandez and galloped 42-yards to break open the flood gates.
With Bluffdale understandably keying on Montgomery, Matthew Garcia snagged a one-yard touchdown from Blaze Duncan to build a 22-6 lead. A 16-yard run by Montgomery and a 12-yarder by Shugart put Strawn out front 36-6.
The Greyhounds finished off the night early in the second quarter with Trey Orsini scoring on a run of nine yards. Strawn’s night was finished with 7:07 remaining in the first half when Orsini scored his second touchdown on a five-yard scamper.
Luke Eli the Greyhounds’ defense with seven tackles while Montgomery had six.
The win guarantees a district championship matchup between Strawn and Gordon and sets up the area’s most exciting football game with two top-ten teams clashing.
Strawn as a two-time defending state champion has battled through the adversity of losing Montgomery’s services in a stretch where they lost two games to Garden City and may after starting the season 4-1 and ranked No. 2.
As Strawn has slowly descended the rankings (both losses were to bigger schools) Gordon has ascended to even the sacles. Starting the year ranked No. 15, and with Coach Mike Reed pointing out his team had done nothing to earn what he considered to be a lofty berth the Longhorns defense has allowed just 36 points over its last eight games.
Is there a way to determine the favorite in this contest?
Perhaps it’s looking past the big scores the two teams both post and looking at the defenses. Gustine scored eight points against Gordon in a 54-8 contest Friday while the Tigers were blanked 46-0 by Strawn. Bluffdale was shutout by Gordon 56-0 but scored six points against Strawn 52-6.
Is Strawn still the big boy on the local block, or is Gordon once again ready to step up and take that mantle?
One thing for sure, this game will send a signal through six-man football.