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Colton continues best season in decades with 50-6 victory over the Cougars, eye playoffs as league season winds down.

PMG PHOTO: RALEIGH EMERSON - Colton football defeated Gervais 50-6 on Friday, Oct. 21, to improve to 8-0 and remain No. 1 in the 2A state rankings.

When Colton began their 50-6 conquest of Gervais on Oct. 21 with an onside kick recovery on the opening kickoff, it became apparent that the top 2A team in the state was on a mission. That mission: get out of the wind and recently arrived rain as quickly as possible.

The Vikings went to work right away, putting up 18-0 points in the first quarter and 38-0 in the first half. A running clock established by rushing touchdowns from Nolan Earls (2), rushing touchdowns from Lance Gunter and Rickie Hendrickson, as well as a pass touchdown from quarterback Wyatt Holliday to Jordan Heavens, put Colton well on track to winning its eighth in a row.

In fact the only hindrances were a slew of missed 2-point conversion attempts and a Gervais touchdown from senior Jorge Barroso. Otherwise it was all Colton.

But if you asked the team what they expected this year to be like at the start of the season? It wasn't this, according to Holliday.

"Not at all (what we expected at the start of the year)," Holliday said. "It kind of surprised me. We came in wanting to win it all, but obviously there were our doubts. But we kept our heads high and came through. We're doing great this year."

Indeed they are. Colton scooped a Gervais fumble in the Cougars end zone for another touchdown, this time converting on second down. To put the finishing touch on the game, Holliday found tight end Noah Bjornstedt over the middle for a 90-yard touchdown pass.

Holliday knew as soon as it left his hand that it was going to the house, and enjoyed the way his team hummed on offense.

"I think we did great, it was a lot of fun," Holliday said. "We had a lot of fun, everything seemed to be working."

PMG PHOTO: RALEIGH EMERSON - Colton senior Rickie Henderson runs behind a wall of blockers in the Vikings 50-6 win over Gervais on Oct. 21.

Colton head football coach Jason Stewart played around the lineups once the lead was established, plugging in junior varsity players to give them live looks at varsity opposition. Not only does it establish a solid foundation for next year, but the Vikings build up redundancies heading into the final regular game of the season against Culver.

"It's important because if somebody gets hurt, it's the next guy up," Stewart said. "That way they have reps, and if they don't have reps, they don't know what they're doing."

That upcoming contest against Culver is vital to Colton securing the Tri-River Conference title with an unblemished record. It's also important to confirm the team's No. 1 overall seed heading into the 2A playoffs.

Culver carries a deceptive 3-4 record. Despite going just 2-2 thus far in the Tri-River Conference, the team is ranked 12th in the state. To avoid an upset, Stewart and his coaching staff are going back to basics in practice.

"After today, we're going to go back to our bread and butter and get a little bit more strict," Stewart said. "Playoffs are coming, we have to get their minds right and keep doing what we've been doing all year. We'll run the ball a lot, set the pass up with the run, and vice versa."

That matchup between Colton (8-0) and Culver (3-4) will be at Culver at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28.


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