Even Wayzata coach Brad Anderson knows that his best-kept secret, quarterback Nick Martin, can no longer remain in the background.
Not after a performance like he had on Saturday, when the senior made it look simple, completing 14 of 22 passes for 199 yards and three touchdowns as Wayzata crushed previously undefeated Cretin-Derham Hall 42-0 to advance to the Prep Bowl for the third time in four years.
"We've tried to keep him under wraps because he's so valuable to us," Anderson said. "We couldn't risk losing him. But I will say that he's the best quarterback I've coached since I've been at Wayzata."
Martin and his favorite receiver, Jeff Borchardt, played pitch-and-catch for much of the game, hooking up seven times for 140 yards and two touchdowns.
"Borch and I are good friends," Martin said. "Starting last summer, we got together and worked on our game. I know he'll always come through when I need him."
Cretin-Derham Hall was supposed to be the true test.
Wayzata, with its 22-game winning streak and silly-fast defense and playmakers on offense, was going to get the challenge that had eluded it for all but one game this season.
That was the expectation, at least. The reality was just another in a long line of dominant performances by Wayzata, which appears to be not only peaking but improving at the right time.
"I know it's boring, but it's all about the players' willingness to do the work," Anderson said. "The preparation and the attention to detail are the biggest reasons."
After fumbling on its first possession of the game, Wayzata scored three of the next four times it had the ball, all on Martin passes.
Often overlooked when talk comes to the top signal callers in the state, Martin was precise on his reads and accurate with his throws. He hit Borchardt for touchdowns of 19 and 17 yards sandwiched around a 7-yard scoring strike to Ethan Zeidler as the Trojans took a 21-0 lead into halftime.
Meanwhile, the Trojans defense resembled nothing less than sticker burrs. Undersized but extremely quick, they flew to the ball en masse, not allowing Cretin-Derham Hall's offense to cross midfield until late in the fourth quarter.
"You can talk about size, but I will sacrifice size for speed and aggressiveness all the time," Anderson said. "We train our guys to play fast and aggressive. We want to attack on defense."
The victory set up the Prep Bowl matchup most fans were hoping for. The Trojans (12-0) will face Eden Prairie in the Class 5A championship game Friday.