It was a defensive slugfest from the get-go in the opening round of the Division I North Region quarterfinals between Reno High and visiting Bishop Manogue.
Neither team scored in the first quarter, but it was Reno that kept Manogue’s score at zero as the Huskies advanced to the semifinals with a 17-0 win on Friday night.
The Huskies’ defense allowed just 249 yards, forced an interception and got the shutout.
Each team put together just a few significant drives in an old-school, smash-mouth kind of game, but ultimately, it was the Huskies that were able to cap off those drives with points to get the victory.
“It was everybody,” Reno quarterback Jeremy Smith said. “There’s no one person. We played as a team.”
Most alarming for Reno was the loss of running back Cole Eddy in the second quarter. Eddy missed a game two weeks ago with a head injury and missed most of Friday’s game with a leg injury. Eddy, who is the team’s top offensive threat, spent the second half wearing a brace and was on crutches.
Still, with its top rusher out, the Reno offense racked up 166 yards on the ground. Smith, who stepped up in Eddy’s absence with 144 yards rushing and a touchdown, led the team in the rushing department.
“It was all the line,” Smith said. “They stepped up and pushed everybody.”
The game remained close until late in the fourth quarter when Smith’s touchdown run put Reno up by 17. Before Smith’s game-deciding touchdown, Manogue had several scoring opportunities, but each time the Reno defense sent the Miners back to the sideline with no points to show. Twice the Miners fell to turnovers on downs inside Reno territory, and twice the team missed field goals.
With a young nucleus, a freshman quarterback and a first-year coach all with a season’s worth of experience, Manogue should now be in a position to compete for next year’s title in the Sierra League.
“That’s a great football team in Reno,” Manogue coach Thomas Peregrin said. “It’s hard to start thinking about next year, but we do have some younger guys that are really bright. There’s a lot of bright spots, and we’re really looking forward to the future.”
RENO 17, BISHOP MANOGUE 0
PLAYER OF THE GAME: Reno senior quarterback Jeremy Smith went 10-of-15 for 113 yards passing and ran the ball 17 times for 144 yards and a touchdown.
SECOND-HALF D: In the second half, the Reno defense forced three punts (two were three-and-outs), caused and interception and allowed no points.
TOP RECEIVER: Manogue’s Zachary Teats led all receivers with six catches for 79 yards including a spectacular grab on a 37-yard deep ball.