Green Canyon closed out its road contest against Ridgeline using its strong run game to win 23-7 in its second-to-last Region 11 game of the season on Friday night in Millville.
A few seconds into the fourth quarter, the Riverhawks (2-6, 0-4 Region 11) punted the ball to the Wolves (6-2, 2-2) out of their own end zone. GC took over with great field position, but rather than quickly take advantage of such an opportunity, the Wolves took their dear sweet time.
Three times on that crucial drive, Green Canyon converted on fourth down. Twice junior quarterback Jake Lundin gained the necessary yards on the ground; the other time running back Brennan Dean converted on the do-or-die down.
In all, the drive milked 10 minutes off the clock before Lundin tossed an 8-yard touchdown to Kyle Baker to ice the game.
Though the Lundin-to-Baker connection put the game effectively out of reach, Green Canyon was in control almost from the get-go, never trailing in the game. The Wolves scored 10 first-quarter points and held down Ridgeline’s offense.
The Riverhawk’s lone scoring play on the night — a Kaden Cox 10-yard run in the second quarter — was set up by a Green Canyon fumble.
Ridgeline simply couldn’t move the ball against the Wolves, especially in the second half. Cox found himself under constant pressure from the Green Canyon defensive front as the Riverhawks gained just 20 yards of net offense in the second half. By the end of the game, RHS gained a mere 138 total yards of total offense.
Defensively, the Wolves are on a bit of a tear, allowing just one touchdown in their last three games. Outside of its loss to Sky View where the team gave up a season-worst 32 points, Green Canyon is allowing a mere 6.4 points per game
The Wolves’ offense played almost as well as the defense on Friday putting together a solid effort, particularly with their ground game. Dean and Lundin were the only players to carry the rock all night, with the former getting 133 yards, the latter getting 124, and both getting one touchdown run in the game.
The run game worked so well that Lundin threw a season-low 14 passes for just 84 yards.
That consistent offense allowed Green Canyon to score in both the third and fourth quarters, and extend the lead the team built early in the game.
Ridgeline’s offense has been anything but consistent. In their first two games, the team put up 86 points. In the six games since, the Riverhawks have put 65 points on the scoreboard.
Friday’s game keeps Green Canyon in third place in Region 11, while Ridgeline remains in last place and still winless in region games.