As it has all season, O’Dea took to the ground to blow past its opponent.
This time, the Irish running attack was too much for Mountain View, as O’Dea won a Class 3A state football quarterfinal game 63-20 at McKenzie Stadium in Vancouver.
O’Dea (12-0) advances to the semifinals where the Irish will face the winner of Saturday’s Eastside Catholic-Meadowdale game. Mountain View finished 9-3.
Running back Myles Gaskin rushed for 165 yards and three touchdowns on 11 first-half carries, and quarterback Pierre LeDorze also rushed for the century mark in the first half, leading the Irish to a 49-0 lead at the half. O’Dea rushed for 353 yards in the first half. The game was played with a modified running clock for the entire second half.
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“Offensively, we were pounding the ball,” LeDorze said. “We were doing a great job. O-line opened us some great holes. Defensive line, they kept getting stops. I’m not even sure how many first downs they allowed in the first half. They’re doing a great job stopping them. The O-line’s opening up holes, the running backs are making plays — a great combination.”
Just as impressive was O’Dea’s defensive effort against a Thunder team that averaged 40 points a game and had been running on everyone. The Thunder did not run much on the Irish.
“It was strength vs. strength, man vs. man,” said O’Dea defensive lineman Jarius McDade, who takes up a lot of space at 6 feet 2, 313 pounds. “Who’s tougher? Who’s tougher? No soup. They don’t get no soup.”
Nope, the Thunder did not.
The Thunder had a turnover and went three-and-out two times on their first three possessions. By the time it got the ball for its fourth drive, O’Dea led 28-0.
Jonathan Wells recovered an offensive fumble in the end zone. Nathan Proctor Jr. returned an interception 30 yards for a touchdown. And Gaskin scored on runs of 68 and 2 for the first four O’Dea TDs.
Gaskin would add touchdown runs of 15 and 19 yards and then Jack Flor scored on a 4-yard run for a 49-0 lead late in the second quarter.
“I think it’s great, but ultimately that’s not our goal,” LeDorze said. “Our goal’s to win a state championship. It’s another step for us. Our focus is 100 percent on this game, not looking forward to it, but it leads to our goal. So to get better we still know we have to prepare for this Saturday. It’s a great accomplishment, but we definitely want more. We’re hungry for more.”
Paul Valencia of The Columbian contributed to this report