Gilbert’s Catriez Cook awaited a snap late in Friday night’s game, bobbing his head to the beat from the drums in the Strom Thurmond band.
It was that kind of night for Cook and the sixth-ranked Indians, who crashed the No. 4 Rebels’ homecoming with a 49-28 victory.
Cook and the Indians kept Strom Thurmond’s defense off-balance throughout with a variety of offensive formations, and the senior ran past, around and over Rebel defenders to the tune of 287 yards and five touchdowns on 37 carries.
Strom Thurmond trailed 28-0 midway through the second quarter and never could make enough stops to catch up. The Indians punished the Rebels on third-down plays, a familiar thorn in Strom Thurmond’s side this season, to extend drives and keep Tyrece Nick and the Rebels’ offense on the sideline.
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Gilbert set the tone from the start, scoring on its opening drive and then recovering a fumble on the Rebels’ first play of the game. The Indians scored on their first four drives before a missed field goal on their last play of the first half.
Gilbert quarterback Josh Strickland also had a big night, throwing for 190 yards and two touchdowns.
How they scored
G — Catriez Cook 2 run (Riser Gramling kick) 7:50
G — Cook 1 run (Gramling kick) 4:58
G — Cook 18 run (Gramling kick) 0:03
G — Josh Strickland 34 pass to Trip Bumgarner (Gramling kick) 6:44
ST — Tyrece Nick 5 run (Lawson Reel kick) 4:06
G — Strickland 12 pass to Manny Bright (Gramling kick) 7:36
ST — Jaquan Edwards 2 run (Reel kick) 5:18
G — Cook 42 run (Gramling kick) 2:23
ST — Edwards 3 run (Reel kick) 10:16
G — Cook 49 run (Gramling kick) 3:28
ST — Edwards 4 run (Reel kick) 1:55
Rushing: G — Catriez Cook 37-287-5, Manny Bright 7-28, Ray Baston 5-8, Rab Reeder 1-2, Josh Strickland 4-(-7). ST — Jaquan Edwards 12-112-3, Tyrece Nick 15-99-1, Stanley Hill 4-35, Dante Holloway 1-3, Jacoby Miles 1-0.
Passing G — Josh Strickland 13-19-190-2-0, Manny Bright 0-1. ST — Tyrece Nick 5-7-89-0-0.
Receiving: G — Brett Duncan 5-68, Trip Bumgarner 3-58-1, Catriez Cook 2-31, Rab Reeder 1-19, Manny Bright 1-12-1, Ray Baston 1-2. Totals 13-190-2. ST — Rashad Bryant 4-93, Jalen Simpkins 1-(-4).