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Vikings rebound at ‘Cats’ expense

Thompson rushes for two TDs, 156 yards

Posted: November 14, 2008 10:39 p.m.
Updated: November 15, 2008 4:55 a.m.

Valencia Junior Zack Tartabull (80) pushes his way past West Ranch player Adam Nowakowski (26) during the first quarter of the Friday night game played at Valencia High School.

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West Ranch quarterback Jake Bernards hit the ground, hardly even looking at the play.

Flat on his back, hands grasping his facemask, he slowly picked himself up as Valencia celebrated its interception.

A silent Wildcat sideline stood in stark comparison to that of the Vikings, ball in hand with a commanding lead late in the game and poised for a playoff run.

And run they did, mostly on the legs of running back Jordan Thompson, who finished with 156 yards and two touchdowns in their 49-0 rout of West Ranch at Valencia High on Friday night.

"Jordan Thompson is a terrific running back with great vision," said Valencia head coach Larry Muir. "We've leaned on him all year long and going into the playoffs we are certainly going to lean on him as well."

However, the Vikings (8-2, 4-1) did not solely rely on the play of Thompson.

Senior quarterback Dominick Solley made the Wildcats defense pay for crashing down on the running game. Late in the second half, the Vikings put the ball in the end zone on three out of four plays, a microcosm of the one-sided play.

In the shutout, Valencia's defense held Bernards to 51 yards passing and 45 on the ground.

Running back Trent Yokofich was the only bright spot of offense of the night for West Ranch (2-8, 1-4), rushing for 70 yards.

With an offense loaded with playmakers and the hard-hitting defense exhibited on Friday night, the Vikings must wait until Sunday at 11 a.m. to find out who they will meet in the first round of the CIF-Southern Section Northern Division Playoffs.

"Everything is about the second season and pushing in that direction," Muir said. "It was important that we came out and played well, to the best of our abilities so that going into the playoffs we can play Viking Football."

If their play Friday night is any indication, they are ready to build off last year's second-round postseason loss to Newbury Park, and have the tools to do it.

"We work very well together," Thompson said. "Our lineman are very strong. Dominick (Solley) is doing very well. Our main problem is too many penalties and we're shooting ourselves in the foot. If our offense gets rolling, we are good to go."

While the Vikings got off to a hot start, scoring twice in the first quarter, they did not score again in the half.

West Ranch had its best opportunity to score at the end of the second quarter, but missed a field goal to cap off its 17-play drive.

"It's the Foothill League," said West Ranch head coach Mike Kane. "We have to be better."

The Vikings then exploded in the second half before getting the reserves some action in the fourth quarter.
After stumbling last week to Saugus, the goal this week was simple.


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