A resurgent Two Rivers football program sought greater respect and knew a playoff victory at St. Thomas Academy would aid the cause.
Saturday's Class 5A, Section 3 semifinal started well enough for the Warriors. A long Ramzi Rislove touchdown dash resulted in a Two Rivers lead less than two minutes into the game at Gerry Brown Stadium.
St. Thomas Academy got even with a methodical, run-heavy drive. From there, the teams tied for ninth in the final Class 5A rankings went in different directions.
The lightning scores stopped for Two Rivers. The Cadets' thundering drives, however, continued unabated.
The result: A 47-14 St. Thomas Academy rout.
Rislove's 67-yard score was answered by three touchdown runs from Niko Vargas and another from teammate Savion Hart as the Cadets built a 26-7 halftime lead. For the game, the duo combined for six of their team's seven touchdowns.
Two Rivers (7-2) did threaten in the third quarter with good field position, but an interception kept the Cadets (7-2) in control.
*To see the section tournament brackets in six classes and the state tournament bracket in Class 6A, click here.