Dad let his son loose.
That's bad news in 2A because Chandler Valley Christian's Jordan Morgan spent most of Friday night sprinting while being pursued, and more often than not, Morgan and the Trojans are going to win that race.
They did in a big rivalry game with a 35-28 victory at Scottsdale Christian, despite a fourth quarter in which the Trojans did most of the chasing on defense.
Last year's matchup was a blowout for Valley Christian, but thanks to SCA's running game and a nearly unstoppable Brett Miller, these two teams returned to their rough-and-tumble ways in what played out to be a nail-biter.
The Trojans waltzed through the first three games of the season without allowing a point, but that was going to end against the Eagles, and a valiant comeback by SCA fell short by a couple fingertips.
Trailing 35-28 but dominating time of possession in the second half, the Eagles had their last chance on fourth down with four minutes remaining.
Brett Miller (seven receptions, 193 yards, one TD) caught everything thrown his way to that point. He converted a couple fourth-and-extra-long downs and caught and ran a first-quarter bomb for a 95-yard score.
Miller Bentley threw a lob pass into the end zone. Miller had run across the field in single coverage and laid out, but the ball glanced off his fingers as he crashed onto the artificial turf.
SCA stopped Valley Christian again and had one more shot with less than a minute left, but Morgan flew in from his safety spot on a blitz and crunched Bentley on fourth down to force an incompletion.
"That felt good," Jordan said.
"We made a game of it, but football sometimes comes down to inches, and a handful of plays usually dictate a game," Scottsdale Christian coach Jeff Fox said. "They made a couple more than we did and they're definitely worthy of being the top dog right now."
By that point, Morgan had run for 138 yards and four touchdowns, including a 43-yarder on a third-and-14 broken play in which he avoided two SCA lineman, juked another defender on the sideline and then outraced a chasing safety into the end zone.
No wonder the junior has a box of letters from Division I schools.
"That's probably one for the highlight reel," Morgan said. "...My dad cut me loose."
Good thing, too, because Valley Christian's defense was on the field the vast majority of the second half, and though penalties and missed opportunities in the passing game were new appearances this season, the level of competition went up four notches.
"This is big," Trojans coach Bill Morgan said as he noted "80 percent" of roster made a significant play at one point or another. "When our defense needed it, we got one. It was tough going."
LIVE IN-GAME UPDATES
Jordan Morgan ran off-tackle for 37 yards for a TD on third-and-long. Valley Christian 7-0.
Valley Christian doesn't kick a FG, and on the next play Scottsdale Christian gets a 95-yard TD pass from Miller Bentley to Brett Miller. Kick missed and its 7-6 VC.
Jordan Morgan just dragged 3 SCA players into the end zone and it's now 14-6 VC with 6 minutes left in the first half.
On third-and-14, Jordan Morgan ran 43 yards for a TD (his third) and it's 21-6 VC with four minutes left in the half.
Scottsdale Christian's Miller Bentley went up and over on third-and-goal and Brett Miller caught a two-point conversion pass on a great play by Chauncey Wright, and it's 21-14 VC with 15 seconds left in the half.
Valley Christian leads 21-14 at halftime, but Scottsdale Christian gets the ball to start the second half.
Brett Miller from SCA has four catches for 160 yards, a TD and a two-point conversion.
Jordan Morgan from VC has 9 carries for 121 yards and 3 TDs, plus 4-for-4 for 67 yards passing.
Jordan Morgan did it again, this time from 14 yards out on a third-and-long, and it's 28-14 VC.
Scottsdale Christian's Jenson Cruse runs in from 6 yards out and it's 28-21 Valley Christian with 3 1/2 minutes left.
Valley Christian's Addison Bare runs 69 yards for a TD as VC takes a 35-21 lead.
SCA's Jenson Cruse scores from 15 yards around the left side and it's 35-28 VC.
Final: Valley Christian 35, Scottsdale Christian 28
Valley Christian (3-0) at Scottsdale Christian (2-0)
Time: 7 p.m.
Address: 14400 N. Tatum Blvd., Phoenix
Key matchup: Scottsdale Christian has run wild with Brett Miller and quarterback Milley Bentley but the Trojans defensive line is big and quick. If Valley Christian gets a lead or otherwise stops SCA’s running game, the Eagles will get clipped.
Key stat: The Trojans average more yards per carry (14.6) than yards per reception (14.2).
The intrigue: Plenty. It’s a long-running rivalry where both teams are mirror images of one another. Led by their quarterback and running backs, the winner gets a leg up in the 2A Central standings. Both teams are nowhere near as effective without a running game, so execution up front and whichever team can stop the other prevails.