Vikings think sooner is better when tackling McQueen
These days no time is right to play the “McQueen Machine.”
South Tahoe High is next in line to test the “college program” posing as a high school team Friday night in Reno.
Last year’s state runner-up and defending Northern Nevada 4A regional champion showed its muscle again last Friday with a 56-0 thumping of Sierra Division title contender Douglas.
“They’re tough,” said STHS co-coach Rod Robison following last Saturday’s opener against Reed. “Whether we play McQueen, Tonopah or whoever it is, we have to come to work and get ready for that game.”
Kicker/safety Ryan Kraw, who will be a threat with his leg to stop McQueen’s current shutout streak on Friday, doesn’t mind challenging the state’s best program over the past 10 years.
“I’d rather play them now,” he said. “They are a really good team. We just need to come out and play our hardest and do the best we can against them.”
While the Lancers have run off 56 answered points this season, the Vikings are on a string of points of their own. They scored the final 19 points in a 35-26 season-opening defeat to Reed last Saturday.
“We were more conditioned,” Kraw said. “Our coaches have been really pushing us, and it really showed in the fourth quarter.”
That comeback was missed by the McQueen coaching staff, which left its “Hill” perch before the second-half kickoff. By leaving early the Lancers didn’t see senior tailback Greg Williams rush for 87 yards on six carries, including a dazzling 19-yard touchdown run.
“He’s a great runner and he’s still learning our system,” Robison said. “He’s going to be really good and it’s going to be great to have two speed guys in the backfield, but he’s new and a free-spirit runner.
“In the second half, he really wanted to carry the ball, so we decided to give it to him and let him do what he can do.”
Complementing Williams’ breakaway running was quarterback Robert Smith’s ability to run or pass. Smith passed for 198 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for 18 yards — a stat that includes several big sacks.
“It’s his competitive spirit that drives him and he listens to what we want him to do,” Robison said. “He throws a sweet ball and not giving him a chance to actually set up and throw the ball hurt us a little bit.”
McQueen was so dominant against Douglas that by halftime the Lancers built an enormous 49-0 lead. Quarterback Zack Borba ran 47 yards for one score and tossed a 39-yard pass to Mohu Otuafi for another.
Last year, the Lancers used three fumble recoveries to post a 52-3 victory over the Vikings. STHS’s only score was a 27-yard field goal by Justin Nixon.
Friday’s game begins at 7:30 p.m.
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