The ball is pretty important.
See: Reed’s 68-21 home win over McQueen on Friday night.
The Raiders only outgained the Lancers by 90 yards, 433-343, but won the turnover battle 7-0. The seven turnovers repeatedly gave the hosts short field, resulting in 35 points, as Reed (7-1, 3-0) won its 23rd straight game against 4A North competition. The Lancers dipped to 2-5, 1-2.
It was the second straight week Reed used turnovers to pull away. The Raiders turned four Reno turnovers into 14 points in last week’s 28-14 win.
“Those (turnovers) are good things,” Reed coach Ernie Howren said. “To get turnovers and not turn it over, you’re usually going to put a lot of points on the board.”
The Raiders needed just 16 offensive plays in the first quarter to take a 28-0 lead. Then McQueen fought. The defense that got torched in the first quarter held Reed to -2 yards on six plays in the second quarter.
Trailing 28-7 in the final seconds of the first half, the Lancers faced fourth and goal from Reed’s 4. Quarterback Zach Ball was stuffed. It was the second time in the quarter McQueen failed to score from inside Reed’s 10.
Things quickly spiraled out of control out of the locker room.
The Raiders scored six touchdowns in the second half – on just 14 plays.
“There was a point in that second quarter that we didn’t play very clean football,” Howren said. “McQueen started moving the football. We weren’t. We lost momentum. Then we got it back.”
That’s an understatement.
Senior running back Tre Bussey found the end zone five times on just 10 carries for 132 yards.
Junior quarterback Cameron Emerson completed 11-of-14 passes for 194 yards and three touchdowns to three different receivers.
Robert Ferrel caught the first touchdown on Reed’s first play from scrimmage. Following a Nick Striejewske interception on McQueen’s second play, Ferrel took a screen pass 12 yards to pay dirt. He finished with four grabs for 59 yards.
Michael Spivack caught a slant for a one-yard touchdown late in the third, stretching the advantage to 48-14. He finished with four receptions for 78 yards.
Grant Cotter took his second and final reception 31 yards, giving the Raiders a 55-14 edge.
Touchdown runs by backup quarterback Baylor Horning (48 yards) and Austyn Mitchell (36 yards) capped the Raiders’ scoring.
The Raiders go to Hug (0-6, 0-3) next Friday looking for their seventh straight win this season. The close the season the following week at home against Spanish Springs (5-2, 3-0).