Four minutes into the fourth quarter, with neither team scoring since Torrey Pines’ initial touchdown early in the first six minutes of the game, Falcon linebacker Jacob Schneider caused Westview sophomore quarterback Jackson Nau to fumble the ball at the Wolverine 39-yard line. Taking possession, the Falcons capitalized on the opportunity — running back Gabe Gmyr ran 20 yards into the corner of the end zone, barely avoiding a Wolverine defender and widening their lead to 13-0.
“The wide receiver came in with the play and said, ‘Hey guys, message from Coach: we need to score here,’” Gymr said. “So, they snapped the ball, the lineman did an amazing job and just cut off his block, and I just saw the open field … and made that happen.”
Torrey Pines (4-1) went on to defeat Westview (1-4) 27-0, scoring two more rapid-fire touchdowns near the end of the fourth quarter, overpowering their weakened and discouraged opponents. Just three minutes after Gmyr’s touchdown, another fumble by Nau led to running back Luke Duerr scoring a 20-yard touchdown, bringing the score to 20-0 with minutes on the clock..
“I was just running, saw green, and I had my lead blocker get a great hit for me,” Duerr said.
Just 15 seconds after that, an interception by Falcon linebacker Tanner Watkins at Westview’s 20-yard line and an 18-yard play gain by Duerr allowed running back Ty Helfrich to score the final touchdown of the night, falling forward two yards into the end zone among a throng of Wolverine defenders.
Most of the game was characterized by strong and sturdy defense from both sides, resulting in a stalemate nearly three quarters long. However, once the Falcons began to put pressure on the Wolverines in terms of higher-intensity offense and were able to break through, Westview’s composure and technique crumbled quickly.
“I think we’re a physically bigger, stronger, faster team,” Falcons head coach Ron Gladnick said. “As the game wore on, the physical grind tilted in our favor.”
However, according to Gmyr and Duerr, offensively, the Falcons still need some improvement.
“We have to definitely step up our offense; that’s the goal for this week,” Gmyr said. “We got a tough opponent with San Marcos, and a game like [tonight] isn’t going to cut it, so we have a lot of work to do.”
Having a bye week will give Torrey Pines a good opportunity to rest and be extra prepared for the next game and the rest of the season, Gladnick said.
“This week on the bye week we want to get healthy,” Gladnick said. “We have quite a few kids banged up, so we’ll get to sit a bunch of kids for a whole week. Then, we’re going to give the kids a couple days off — Monday and Friday — and Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday we’re going to focus on getting better.”
The Falcons will play San Marcos High School in two weeks on Oct. 7 at home. Westview faces off against Ramona High School on Oct. 7 at home as well.