Parker Houston summed up the game perfectly.
“That’s what I’m going to see at the next level,” he said.
Indeed, it is.
Bishop Gorman used a monstrous size advantage in taking a 41-13 win over Reed on Saturday at Reed in Nevada state semifinal football playoff game.
“It’s tough, but we definitely should have done better than we did,” Houston, who will play for San Diego State next fall, said. “Those guys are big and they’re hard to move, but there was a way that we could have overcame it.”
Gorman will try for its second consecutive undefeated season when it faces Liberty on Dec. 5 at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas for the state championship.
The 13 points are the fewest Reed scored all season.
“It never gets old, this is why we grind so hard,” Gorman coach Kenny Sanchez said. “I knew it was going to be a really good Reed game and we’d have to battle some conditions that we’re not used too. The weather, even though I thought it was a really nice day. The field was in bad shape, on both sides.”
He said the slippery field hindered both teams
“Their offense is used to getting going. I think their guys struggled a little with their feet, but so did we,” Sanchez said.
Reed junior Robert Ferrel scored twice, on throws of 40 and 38 yards, from quarterback Matt Denn. Ferrell caught five passes for 105 yards.
Ferrel’s first score brought the Raiders within 8, 14-6, early on the second quarter.
Gorman sophomore Brevin Jordan caught a 15-yard TD pass that made it 21-6 until late in the half. Alex Perry intercepted Denn on the Gorman 27 yard line weaved his way, slowly due to the slippery field, in for a score that gave the Gaels a little breathing room with a 27-6 lead at the half.
Reed running back Jorden Carter carried the ball 18 times for 112 yards.
Biaggio Ali-Walsh rushed for four scores and 182 yards on 22 carries on the slippery field. Gorman relied on Walsh and quarterback Tate Martell, both juniors, for the first three quarters. Martell rush for 87 yards on 14 carries, but he had a few drive-saving rushes in the first half.
Martell completed 8-of-15 passes for 133 yards and two scores.
Reed coach Ernie Howren said he did not have a speech prepared for losing the game.
“It’s difficult when this time comes and your season’s over,” Howren said.
He said the Raiders got worn down a little by the end of the game.
“We had made some good adjustments and unfortunately they made some adjustments. They kept pounding the ball,” he said. “That’s a good football team over there. Their coaching staff does such a good job and they have stud players.”
Howren was proud his team held Gorman to 34 offensive points, but said the Raiders needed to match the Gaels scoring output.
Reed scored on its first drive of the second half to pull within 27-13.
Sanchez said the Gorman coaching staff was a little nervous about the game beforehand.
“Anytime you play a team that’s undefeated and averaging 58 points a game, it puts a little life in your butt during the week because you know you’ve got get ready for a different ballgame,” Sanchez said. “For our defense to hold them under 20 points, 13 points is pretty impressive.”
Sanchez told his team about the cold weather only once last week.
“I told them and the coaches, that was the last time we were going to talk about cold or whatever. If one person was going to talk about, I was going to send them home,” Sanchez said.
Sanchez complimented the Raiders.
“Coach Howren is a phenomenal football coach. He finds away every year to put himself in line to play for a state title,” Sanchez said. “I’m not sorry we’re the ones to knock them off all the time, but so be it.”