Top ranked 2A, 1A teams face little resistance in first round playoff matchups

PMG PHOTO: GARY ALLEN - St. Paul senior Gianni Grasso led the top-ranked Buckaroos with three touchdowns in a 58-6 win over No. 16 Elgin in the first round of the 1A state playoffs on Friday.St. Paul Football

Gianni Grasso rushed for three touchdowns and T.J. Crawford passed for three more, as the No. 1 Buckaroos dispatched No. 16 Elgin 58-6 in the first round of the 2019 1A Football State Playoffs on Friday.

St. Paul (10-0, 5-0 Special District 1) traded touchdowns with the visiting Huskies (5-4, 4-2 SD3) in the opening drives for the respective teams before running away with the contest by scoring 50 unanswered points.

Crawford, a senior, completed 5-of-9 passes for 104 yards and three scores in addition to gaining 74 yards on the ground. Bryce Williams, Mitchell Curtis and Alex Dela Cerda each caught touchdowns passes in the win.

The Buckaroos put up 387 rushing yards against the Huskies, led by 142 yards on 11 carries from Curtis. Jaden Thompson added 80 yards on four carries, while Grasso gained 50 yards on eight carries to go along with his three touchdowns.

Saul Martinez added the team's final score and had 44 yards on five touches.

Steven Coppola and Reed Overfield each had 10 tackles on defense, while Martinez led the team with 11 takedowns.

The victory put St. Paul back in the quarterfinals for the fourth-straight year, where they will host No. 8 Days Creek (9-1, 4-1 SD2) on Friday at 7 p.m.

The winner will advance to the 1A state semifinals on Nov. 23 to face either No. 12 Powder Valley (7-3) or No. 4 Camas Valley (8-0).

Kennedy Football

The top-ranked Kennedy football team took care of business in the first round of the 2019 2A Football State Playoffs on Saturday, defeating the Grant Union Prospectors 35-6 at Randy Traeger Stadium.

The Trojans (8-1, 5-0 Special District 2) made short work of the Prospectors (3-7, 3-1 SD6), who traveled to Mount Angel a little over a month after hosting Kennedy in a 42-14 non-league game that Kennedy also won.

Senior Bruce Beyer scored the two opening touchdowns in the playoff rematch, reaching the end zone from 33 yards, followed by a 20-yard fumble return for a touchdown.

The Prospectors pulled within 14-6 on a 67-yard pass from Devin Stokes to Mason Gerry, but the Kennedy defense stood firm the rest of the game.

Kennedy junior quarterback Dylan Kleinschmit connected on a pair of touchdown passes in the second quarter to David Reyes and Isaiah Basargin, respectively, to give the Trojans a 28-6 halftime lead.

Beyer added a three-yard touchdown in the third quarter to round out the scoring.

Kleinschmit finished the game, completing 16-of-26 passes for 207 yards and two touchdowns. Basargin led the team with 104 yards on five catches, while Brady Traeger and Demetre Marseille each caught four passes. Beyer led the rushing game with 91 yards on 14 carries.

The victory marked Kennedy's eighth straight win of the season, and the fifth time the Trojans have held an opponent to a single touchdown.

The team is making its fifth straight quarterfinal appearance and will host the No. 9 Oakland Oakers (8-2, 4-1 SD3) on Saturday.

The winner will face either No. 4 Monroe (9-1) or No. 5 Toledo (8-2) in the state semifinals on Nov. 23.

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