With six-time champion Hutchinson looming next week, it would have been easy for Bishop Carroll to go through the motions against West on Thursday night.
But that's just not how the Eagles do things.
Not looking at all sluggish in the two-and-a-half quarters its starters played, Carroll cruised to a 42-8 victory at Carpenter Stadium in a Class 5A-District 8 game and virtually clinched a berth in the playoffs.
"Tonight gave our kids a chance to come out and get better and for the most part I think we did that," Carroll coach Alan Schuckman said. "I was pleased with how we played in the first half."
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The Eagles ran for 282 yards, 189 of which came from running back Jalen Hernandez and quarterback Tyler Nance.
Arnez Jones led West with 116 yards, including a 59-yard touchdown run late in the game.
"We wanted to work on running the ball tonight, because we know we will have to do it next week," Hernandez said.
Carroll scored on its first six possessions. Hernandez had two scores, while Nance had two touchdown runs along with two passing touchdowns.
West didn't pick up its first first down until 10:43 in the second quarter and had only 25 yards of offense in the half, while Carroll racked up 249.
For one series in the first half, the Eagles moved Nance to wide receiver and brought in sophomore Zeke Palmer to play quarterback.
"We've done that formation a bit," Schuckman said. "We tried to get some different guys on the field at the same time and I thought our execution was pretty good."
Now Carroll can fully focus on Hutchinson. Schuckman wasn't downplaying the importance of the game despite an almost-guaranteed spot in the state playoffs.
"It was a great game last year, even though they ended our season," Schuckman said. "In my opinion they are the best program in the state, so we can get a gauge as to where we are at. I know both schools are looking forward to it."
Bishop Carroll (7-1, 2-0) 21 14 7 0 — 42
West (2-6, 0-2) 0 0 0 8 — 8
C—Hernandez 1 run (Louthan kick)
C—Crippen 5 pass from Nance (Louthan kick)
C—Hernandez 15 run (Louthan kick)
C—Crippen 20 run (Louthan kick)
C—Nance 5 run (Louthan kick)
C—Nance 16 run (Louthan kick)
W—Jones 56 run (Jones run)
Rushing— Carroll, Hernandez 10-96, Nance 10-93, Linnebur 8-68, Palmer 6-27, Harvey 3-(-2). West, Jones 17-116, Flournoy 11-13, Epps 1-0, Griffin 1-(-4), Banks 1-(-4).
Passing— Carroll, Nance 5-8-63-0, Palmer 4-9-27-0. West, Flournoy 7-12-27-0.
Receiving— Carroll, Crippen 4-43, Harvey 3-21, Hernandez 1-13, Bahr 1-13. West, Whiteside 1-9, Sutton 1-8, Banks 1-6, Jones 4-4.