Banged up a bit the past few weeks, top-ranked Palo Verde was back at full strength on Friday night at Arbor View. And it showed.
Chaz Thomas, Torin Harris and Tyrone Blake rushed for two touchdowns apiece as the deep Panthers rolled to a 48-21 road romp over the ninth-ranked Aggies.
“We got this nice shiny pistol and we had all our bullets in it tonight,” Palo Verde coach Darwin Rost said. “Our kids really came out and got after it. We have exceptional team speed and it kind of shows on a good turf field like this.”
The Panthers, Southern Nevada’s only unbeaten Class 4A team at 8-0 (5-0 in the Northwest League), scored on their second play from scrimmage — on an 88-yard sprint by Blake — to take a 7-0 lead and they never trailed.
With the game tied 14-all, Palo Verde scored three touchdowns in a 3:42 span bridging the first and second halves to take control.
Harris, who has committed to play at the University of Southern California next year, scored from 15 yards out to make it 21-14 with 2:43 left in the first half and Thomas bulled his way in from seven yards out with 16 seconds left to make it 28-14.
“When they scored that one just before the half, that was tough,” Arbor View coach Dan Barnson said. “We go as fast as we can on offense, that’s our style, and we gave them just enough time to stick one in before the half. But we’re not going to change the way we play.”
Harris only had three carries in the game, but he scored on two of them, including a 57-yard scamper down the sideline 59 seconds into the second half that gave the Panthers a 35-14 lead.
“It’s special having a guy like Torin Harris who can do a lot of things like that,” Rost said.
Palo Verde produced nearly 500 yards total offense as it taught Arbor View a lesson in a game that was supposed to test the Panthers.
“This was a nice little win because there was a lot of talk that Arbor View was going to come in and upset us,” Rost said. “Our kids treated this like a Cheyenne game. They were real focused all week long.”
Taylor Wooten rushed for 117 yards on 28 carries to lead the Aggies, who fell to 5-3, 2-3 in the Northwest.