Arrow-right Camera


A new dimension

SATURDAY, OCT. 9, 2010

Gonzaga Prep’s Ryan Gregory tackles Central Valley wide receiver Damon Justus. (Matt Mill McKnight)
Gonzaga Prep’s Ryan Gregory tackles Central Valley wide receiver Damon Justus. (Matt Mill McKnight)

Sankey shows he can pass it, too, in G-Prep win

Bishop Sankey … gunslinger?

Gonzaga Prep’s spectacular and sought after back is bearing down on the all-time Greater Spokane League rushing record.

But Friday night at Central Valley, half his total offense came through the air as the Bullpups (5-1) throttled the Bears (3-3) 45-20.

Sankey, taking direct snaps essentially out of a “Wildcat” formation, had what was, even for him, a memorable night. He amassed 424 yards of total offense in less than three quarters of playing time, rushing for four touchdowns and passing for a fifth. He completed 5 of 6 passes for 195 yards to go with a typical 200-yards rushing (229 on 27 carries).

Witnessing the performance was ex-CV star Tyree Clowe, whose single-season (2,318) and career (3,937) yardage marks have stood since 1997. Clowe and his teammates were being honored at halftime for their state championship season.

What he saw was a seemingly inevitable changing of the guard. Sankey moved into second, within 429 yards of Clowe for career yardage with three games remaining.

“He’s a hard runner,” Clowe agreed.

But what about his passing, which ultimately left the Bears shell-shocked and in disarray?

“We practice throwing plays all the time in case we have to pull (a game) out,” Sankey said. “I worked on my mechanics this past week.”

A 42-yard completion led to Prep’s first score, a 25-yarder to the third, a 31-yarder to the fourth – Sankey doing the rest with his feet – and a 20-yarder set up a first-half-ending field goal by Shane Schmidlkofer for a 31-0 lead.

His second completion to Harrison Covey covered 35 yards for a TD to open the third quarter.

With about 9 minutes remaining in the game, Gonzaga was up 45-7. Two of CV’s scores came on short field following turnovers.

Coming in, G-Prep had a mere 39 yards through the air. Sankey quintupled it.

“I’ve been harassed all year that we don’t throw the football,” coach Dave McKenna said. “We threw tonight.”

G-Prep’s easy victory was done mainly without Stanford-bound lineman-fullback Charlie Hopkins, who injured his knee late in the first quarter.

Schmidlkofer, unable to quarterback as a precaution because of an injured shoulder, played at a wing, catching a couple of passes and also carrying the ball for 72 all-purpose yards besides his kicking duties.

“He’s an athlete,” McKenna said. “We’ve missed him. He’s a leader and inspiration to the team.”

Click here to comment on this story »