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Weiss eyes one more title

In his four years as Moapa Valley’s starting running back, Brad Weiss has seen his team go from 3-7 to the brink of a second straight Class 3A state championship.

On Saturday, the Pirates’ record-setting rusher will play his final game when Moapa Valley faces Truckee (Calif.) for the state title at 6 p.m. at Arbor View High School.

“It’s kind of sad but exciting at the same time,” Weiss said of his high school finale. “It’d be a great thing if we could win back-to-back.”

Since the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association went to four classes in 1996, the only 3A schools to repeat have been Truckee (2004, 2005) and Bishop Manogue (2002, 2003).

The Pirates haven’t won consecutive state titles since taking three straight 1A crowns from 1966 to 1968.

“It would mean everything to our kids,” Moapa Valley coach Brent Lewis said. “It’s tough to repeat because everybody’s gunning for you.”

The Pirates (9-2) won the Southern League title on their way to the South’s No. 1 seed for the state playoffs. They’ve vanquished playoff foes Faith Lutheran and Fernley by a combined score of 76-28.

Truckee (9-2), the North’s No. 1 seed, has won its two playoff games by a combined 92-7.

“I think they’ve got six or seven different kids that are capable of making big plays for them,” Lewis said of the Wolverines.

In fact, Truckee averages more than 270 yards rushing per game, but no one player averages more than 55.

It’s a wing-T scheme that uses more misdirection than Pirates rival Virgin Valley’s offense, Lewis said.

“They have weapons all over the field, but we have the athletes, and we think we can shut down their athletes,” said Weiss, also a starting defensive back.

Weiss has rushed for 2,888 yards and 38 touchdowns the past two years.

In Moapa Valley’s 35-7 rout of Fernley last week, he reached 1,688 for the season to eclipse the school record of 1,603 set in 1995 by current Pirates assistant coach Shane Hickman.

On defense, Weiss has returned two of his three interceptions for scores.

Still, the 5-foot-10-inch, 196-pound senior has drawn little recruiting interest, which Lewis said has given him reason to run with a “chip on his shoulder.”

With 49 tackles, including nine sacks, defensive tackle Tyler Lomprey leads a Moapa Valley defense that has collected 40 sacks and 16 interceptions.

The Wolverines allow less than 12 points per game and have shut out two teams.

It’s a refreshing matchup for Lewis, whose team has faced Virgin Valley in the state title game each of the past two seasons.

“Our kids were kind of looking for round three with Virgin Valley, so it presents a new challenge,” Lewis said. “I think our kids are excited about a new challenge.”

Contact reporter Tristan Aird at taird@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5203.

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