High School Sports

Paso Robles has lived on the ground in back-to-back football wins

Paso Robles High’s Colton Madrigal, seen here in the season opener against Bullard, ran for 185 yards last week in a come-from-behind win over Madera.
Paso Robles High’s Colton Madrigal, seen here in the season opener against Bullard, ran for 185 yards last week in a come-from-behind win over Madera. The Tribune

The Paso Robles High football team doesn’t have a star-studded cast of players, and coach Rich Schimke even says his team can be “boring to watch” at times.

But that’s the way Schimke prefers it.

So far, their plodding offensive system has led to two consecutive wins going into league play tonight at home against Righetti at 7.

The Bearcats enter with a record of 2-1 after a come-from-behind 42-27 victory against Madera last week in which they focused heavily on the running attack.

If the NFL is a passing league, Schimke hasn’t tried to incorporate a throw-first philosophy into his team’s offensive scheme — not yet at least.

Quarterback Garrett Nelson attempted only two passes against Madera, which Paso Robles trailed 12-6 at halftime and 19-12 entering the fourth quarter before racking up 30 points in the fourth quarter.

But Paso Robles broke loose for 299 rushing yards, led by Colton Madrigal’s 185 yards on 35 carries. Nelson added 57 yards on the ground on 11 carries, and Jimmy Pacheco scrambled for 50 on six rushes.

“I don’t think we have any standout players,” Schimke said. “We’re boring to watch. That’s the way we like it. We try to keep our defense off the field through offensive possessions. Since we don’t have any real superstars, we need to be more balanced and feed off each other.”

Despite Righetti’s losing record at 1-3, Schimke said the Warriors, second in the PAC 7 last season, will be at the top of the standings by the end of the season.

“Records are deceiving,” Schimke said. “They’re experienced at skills positions. Their offensive line is massive. They want to pound you with the ball.”

Righetti protects the ball with a line led by Dante Gamble at 6-foot-3, 275 pounds in addition to other super-sized guards.

The Warriors lost to Valenica 48-9 last week and their other two losses were only by a touchdown to Villa Park and St. Francis — both ranked fourth in their respective divisions this week. Righetti dominated Cabrillo in a 55-15 win Aug. 31.

Last year, the Warriors dominated the Bearcats 34-0 late in the regular season en route to their 8-4 overall and 4-2 league records.

Righetti senior quarterback Troy Prober threw for 1,500 yards and completed 53 percent of his passes last season.

This season, Prober threw for 221 yards on 18-for-25 passing against Villa Park and 235 yards against Cabrillo, where he was 12-for-17 passing.

A key that Paso Robles will try to focus on is keeping Prober in the pocket because he throws the ball well on the run, Schimke said.

The Paso Robles coach said that his quarterback, Nelson, a second-year starter, has improved steadily thus far.

“He’s getting better week,” Schimke said. “He has to manage the game. But it takes 11 guys on both sides of the ball to win it. If each guy does their job, good things will happen.”

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