Vikings to face injury-depleted Douglas Tigers |

Vikings to face injury-depleted Douglas Tigers

Steve Yingling

Depending on how you look at it, South Tahoe High’s football team could be meeting Douglas at an ideal time. Then again, the timing couldn’t be worse for the Vikings, who are trying to win out to qualify for the postseason.

When the two teams meet on Thursday night in Minden, the Tigers could still be smarting from the 47-13 thumping it received at Bishop Manogue on Saturday. Douglas lost two key players – receiver Zach McFadden and lineman Ryan Moglich – to knee injuries and had several other players shaken up.

South Tahoe, meanwhile, came through its 28-20 division win over Fallon on Saturday with only minimal injury damage.

The Vikings (2-6 overall, 2-3 division) realize that there won’t be any chance of qualify for the playoffs if they don’t upset Douglas, then beat Damonte Ranch at home. South Tahoe is tied with Carson for fifth place, one game behind fourth-place Galena and two games in back of second-place Douglas and Damonte. Galena must still play first-place Mangoue, as will Damonte. The Grizzlies will play the winless Colts this week.

“Our coach told us that Fallon lost to Douglas 14-6, and we could have beaten Fallon by a lot, so I think we have a chance against Douglas,” said Vikings’ senior Noble Lau.

South Tahoe coach Chris Morgan said that since the chance of his team qualifying for the postseason is remote, he hasn’t made it a focal point in his late-season discussions with his squad.

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“We just want to focus on getting better and winning games,” Morgan said. “Win the next two games and I think there is an outside chance due to tiebreakers.”

The Vikings’ devastating home loss to Carson may come back to haunt them. South Tahoe led that game 22-8 in the second half before losing 39-22. The Vikings were without several key contributors in that one.

“That could be the difference of making the playoffs or not,” Morgan said. “(Making the playoffs) would send such a huge boost to this program.”

According to the Record-Courier, which regularly covers the Tigers, Douglas has lost every single key skilled position player, with the exception of quarterback Tim Rudnick, to injury for a period of time this season.

With several of Douglas’ top running backs missing from the starting lineup, Rudnick has shouldered a signifcant part of the offensive load. He has passed for school records in touchdowns (17) and completions (121). Rudnick should also surpass the school record for passing yards in a season in the next week or two.

South Tahoe running backs Eric Taylor and Tyler Lastiri combined to rush for 151 yards against Fallon. They may be busy again on Thursday since the Miners rushed for a whopping 470 yards against the Tigers on Saturday.