Originally published December 1, 2011 at 9:00 PM | Page modified December 2, 2011 at 8:49 PM

Ricky Gordon quietly gets Archbishop Murphy into title game

Junior running back has scored in five of past seven games

Seattle Times staff reporter

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Ricky Gordon is the kind of football player who walks the talk.

Minus the talk.

Gordon lets his actions on the field speak for him, and in that regard he's had a lot to say in fifth-ranked Archbishop Murphy's return to the Class 2A state championship game. Archbishop Murphy will play No. 1 Lynden on Saturday at 10 a.m. in the Tacoma Dome.

"He is kind of a difference-maker in us getting better every week," coach Dave Ward said. "Ricky just makes plays. ... He's doing it all over the field"

Gordon, a 5-foot-9, 160-pound junior who plays running back and defensive back, has scored at least one touchdown in five of the past seven games. He helped pick up the slack on offense when teammate Morgan Masanda went out with an ankle injury early in the season.

Masanda, who is back in the running back mix, was happy to see Gordon step in.

"If I could have picked anybody, it would have been him," Masanda said. "He runs real hard, and he's always real humble."

Gordon, in fact, takes little credit for his success. He is all dash and no flash.

"All those plays I've made this year, I give it to my teammates for being there," he said. "They helped me make the plays. It wasn't just me. I mean, there's 11 football players on a team, and it takes all of them to win."

The Wildcats (12-1), who fell in the title game last year to Tumwater, have won eight in a row since a 26-22 defeat against Lakewood. That was a key turning point in the season.

"We decided we were going to bounce back from it and learn from it," Gordon said. "Now we know how it feels to lose, and we're going to try not to do it again."

He and his teammates hope they are able to win the title game in part for the seniors on the team last year who came up short — including his brother, Randy. Randy Gordon was an inspiration on the team after missing his junior season with an injury, then battling back from a broken leg to be rejoin the team in the playoffs.

"We want to repay our seniors from last year," he said. "We want it this year."

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