Sunnyvale — The Raiders got the win, 34-13, but the Gladiators gained some confidence after this past Friday night’s non-district matchup between Italy and Sunnyvale.
Offensively, senior TaMarcus Sheppard became Italy’s first 100 yard rusher this season with 111 yards on the ground. Defensively, senior linebacker Shad Newman recorded 14 tackles with 11 solos for his best outing of the season.
Defensively, Italy continues to force turnovers and each week it seems to be different players making something happen. Against Sunnyvale, cornerback Justin Wood had an interception at the goal line and a nice return past midfield while defensive end Zain Byers stripped the ball from a Raider receiver and returned it 14-yards. Darol Mayberry, Kevin Roldan and John Byers remain active in the middle while Bailey Walton put in another solid game opposite Z. Byers at the right defensive end position.
Overall, Italy began to gel a bit, particularly on the offensive side of the ball, and that’s good news for Gladiator fans!