Gorillas fast start propels team to 19-0 victory over Cardinals

The second- and third-grade Gorillas football team set the pace of the game during their opening drive.

The Gorillas drove 65 yards on seven plays to score a touchdown on the way to defeating the Cardinals 19-0 Sunday at Youth Sports Inc.

The opening drive ended when Gorillas quarterback Jack Flynn pitched the football to the right for running back Michael Sinks. Sinks edged around the outside and squeaked into the end zone for a 5-yard touchdown run.

The Gorillas continued their dominance on the first possession for the Cardinals. After four plays the ball was back in the hands of the Gorillas offense.

From that point on the Gorillas weren’t quite as dominant throughout the rest of the game. Instead, they slowly laid into the Cardinals to put up points.

The two teams traded possession for the rest of the first quarter and into the second. The continued this way until a costly fumble by the Cardinals gave the ball to the Gorillas at the Cardinal 30-yard line.

The Gorillas’ good field position paid off. With five minutes left in the first half the Gorillas ran numerous plays to set up a first-and-goal at the 2-yard line. The Gorillas looked to fullback Mason Fast to pound the ball into the goal.

Fast’s touchdown made the score 13-0 but also left a little time on the clock for the Cardinals to try and steal a touchdown before halftime.

The Cardinals started the final drive of the half with 1:15 remaining. They ran two plays but couldn’t make up any ground on the field, and the clock continued to run.

With less than 10 seconds in the half the Cardinals went for a reverse to wide receiver Tristan Pickardt. The play faked out the entire Gorillas defense and Pickardt was off to the races. Pickardt had 10 Gorillas beat with one defender left between himself and six points. Unfortunately for Pickardt he couldn’t beat that last defender who made the tackle as time expired in the half.

The Cardinals offsense practices running plays before their game against the Gorillas Sunday at Youth Sports Inc. The Gorillas proved to be a tough test for the Cardinals, defeating them 19-0.

Both teams came out slow in the second half with neither team developing a solid drive until the Gorillas threatened to score at the end of the third quarter. The threat didn’t turn into points.

The final quarter of the game was similar to the third. And just like the third, the Gorillas were on the brink of scoring as the game clock wound down. This time they were able to finish strong and cross the goal line. Gorillas running back Nyle Anderson scored the final six points of the game to help beat the Cardinals 19-0.

Despite the loss, Cardinals head coach Travis Turner saw some positives in the game.

“They started out slow the first half and came back the second half to show a little bit more heart and enthusiasm,” Turner said.