Day After Report: Week 5

We are now beyond the half-way point of the season. Camas still rules Southwest Washington. Union still has a defense. Skyview still has the ability to rally. Here are some new things, though: Evergreen and Columbia River picked up league wins in Week 5

Union 10, Mountain View 0
Really? A 10-0 high school game? Yep. 

The only TD: Spent a lot of the game story about the defense, but what about the only touchdown of the game? Union quarterback Kaben Humphrey-Butler threw a perfect ball, and wide receiver Ray Burney caught it in stride and sprinted the rest of the way for an 80-yard touchdown in the second quarter. 

From the press box, we could see the play develop. I even said “He’s got him” within a few steps, noting that Burney was about to get past the defense. And then the pass. From high up, it is a a thing of beauty to see a long pass float and you can see a receiver run under the ball. Trust me, it rarely happens exactly this way. Often, the receiver has to slow down for the ball, or dive for a ball that is a little out of reach. Not this one. 

“Coach Piland called me over and said we were going to try this,” Humphrey-Butler said. “If (the safety) bites up, throw it. When I looked, I saw the safety coming up. Ray did the rest. He ran underneath it, caught it, and ran for the touchdown.”

Humphrey-Butler finished the first half 9 of 12 for 150 yards. Burney ended up with three catches for 103 yards. 

Defense ruled: Mountain View gained 59 yards on its final drive of the game, in desperation mode in hopes of scoring a touchdown and then getting the onside kick. Up until that possession, the Thunder had 100 yards of offense. 

Mountain View had three serious scoring threats, but the Union defense was up to the challenge.

The first threat was a long run by Sterling Reynolds on Mountain View’s second possession of the game. Reynolds found a hole and only had to beat one guy on his way to a 71-yard touchdown run. But Union defensive back Gabe Rego reached for Reynolds, grabbed his jersey, slowed him down, then tackled him. We used that photo on the cover of The Columbian’s Sports section. If not for Rego, Reynolds likely would have scored. 

The next scoring threat came early in the second quarter after the Mountain View defense forced Union to punt from its end zone. Mountain View started on Union’s 36-yard line, picked up one first down — on a fourth-down play — before the drive stalled. The Thunder then missed a 35-yard field goal attempt.

Mountain View did not get into Union territory again until that final drive when the Thunder got to the Union 8-yard line. On fourth down, the Thunder went for the touchdown, and the ball was batted away in the end zone.

Union needed its defense because the offense was having its troubles with the Mountain View defense, as well as some penalties. Toward the end of the first half, a Titan drive was stalled with three penalties for a total of 28 yards. In the second half, Union had a touchdown called back because of a penalty. 

“It’s super comforting,” Humphrey-Butler said, referring to the team’s defense. “If we don’t get the first down, we have a strong enough defense. Right now, they look unstoppable. No one can get past them. Our defense is playing awesome.”

What a hit: Mountain View running back P.J. Jones ran into what looked to be a hole. It was closed quickly, emphatically, by linebacker Sam Ferenchak. 

Ferenchak smashed Jones in one of the biggest hits of the season. The crowd heard it, even seemed to feel it. And certainly the players felt it, too.

“That hurt me,” Ferenchak acknowledged.

Jones was on the field for a moment, then left the game for a few plays. But he came back. Here’s hoping he just had the wind knocked out of him. It was a massive collision between two strong athletes.


Evergreen 38, Battle Ground 14

It was close, until the Plainsmen scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter. 

Townsend to the house: Evergreen senior Richie Townsend was thrilled with the first touchdown he scored, ecstatic about the second one he scored, less than a minute later. 

But it wasn’t easy. 

“It was tiring, man. It was exhausting,” Townsend said. “I didn’t think the coach was going to give me the ball that much.”

Townsend was forced into a bit more action that he anticipated because of the injury to Chase Lawrence, who had rushed for 92 yards and a touchdown in the first half.

Townsend had one carry in the first half — a 23-yard gain — but then got the ball a bunch when the Plainsmen needed a score in the second half. Battle Ground had rallied from a 17-point deficit with two touchdowns to make it 17-14 early in the fourth quarter. That’s when Townsend and the Plainsmen went back to work on offense.

Townsend carried the ball six times for 43 yards during a 10-play drive. Townsend scored on a 10-yard run to make it 24-14 with 6:37 left in the game.

After Evergreen recovered a muffed kick, the Plainsmen were back in scoring territory. Townsend got the call on three consecutive plays, and he scored from the 2-yard line for a 31-14 lead with 5:38 on the clock.

Sounds tiring. 

“That’s why Coach Anthony has us conditioning every day,” Townsend said. “And God helped me through it.” 

No. 16 was solid, too: Who is No. 16 for Battle Ground. Well, I was never really sure until the end of the game. He was not on the roster, but I caught up with him before he got on the bus.

Turns out, No. 16 is Kokou Akengue. Turns out, he is hard to tackle.

Akengue led Battle Ground’s attack with 157 yards rushing on 25 carries, with two touchdowns. His two scores came a little more than two minutes apart. His first TD — a 1-yard run — made it 17-7. After Battle Ground recovered a fumble on the kickoff, Akengue cashed in on a 6-yard run to make it a three-point game.

The right call: Evergreen fans were disappointed when their team was not awarded a special teams touchdown in the fourth quarter, but it was the correct call.

Evergreen had just made it 24-14 and then kicked off. The ball skipped off the shoulder pad of the Battle Ground returner and was headed toward the sideline. Prior to the ball going out of the bounds, the returner batted the ball back toward the middle of the field. An Evergreen player scooped it up and raced into the end zone. At first, the signal was touchdown.

I was up in the press box explaining to some colleagues that it should not be a touchdown. The returner never had control of the ball, so it is not officially a fumble. It is considered a muff. A muffed kick can be recovered by the other team, but the ball cannot be advanced.

After the officials huddled, they came to the same conclusion, giving the ball to Evergreen but not allowing the touchdown.

Didn’t matter too much, though. Evergreen scored three plays later.

Everyone’s got one: With this victory, as well as Heritage’s win in Portland on Friday, all teams from the 4A and 3A GSHLs have at least one win this season.

Skyview 49, Lincoln 26

Skyview rallies from two touchdowns down with huge second half. 

Turning point: Skyview drives 80 yards on 15 plays late in the third quarter to pull within five points at 26-21. The drive included eight first downs. A 14-yard TD pass from Kieran McDonagh to Reiley Henderson on a third-down play capped the drive.

The Storm then executed an onside kick, recovered by Taylor Millard. Two plays later, McDonagh used a perfect pump fake to freeze the defensive back, and Karl Graves ran free up the sideline, catching the ball in stride for a 37-yard touchdown to put the Storm ahead.

What a difference: Parker Henry rushed for two yards in the first half. Of course, he only got two attempts. In the second half, he and the Skyview offensive line punished Lincoln. Henry ran 17 times for 134 yards.

New QB does the job: Kieran McDonagh filled in for the injured Kody Watts and put on a quarterback clinic. His numbers were excellent: 19 of 23 for 310 yards with five touchdowns. He also had a 77 yards rushing, with a TD on the ground.

Graves craves the ball: Karl Graves did his magic again, catching eight balls for 195 yards and three touchdowns. 

Columbia River 34, Hudson’s Bay 19

River trailed in the second half before pulling away from Bay. 

Special teams: Columbia River scored just before the end of the first half on a blocked punt that was recovered in the end zone by Tanner Bogart.

The Eagles’ second-quarter touchdown — a pass from Travis Roberts to Ingo Arrozal — was set up by an 85-yard kickoff return by Kimothy Kim.

Sophomore showcase: Columbia River got solid performances from a couple of sophomores.

Quarterback Clayton Frank was an efficient 10-for-15 passing for 125 yards and three touchdowns. He also had a rushing touchdown. Running back Remick Kawawaki had a monster effort with 177 yards on 23 carries. Most of their yards came in the second half. 

He knows what to do: Ian Christianson “only” got three catches Friday night. But those three receptions went for 83 yards, with two going to the house. He scored on back-to-back possessions in the third quarter to turn a five-point deficit into a 28-19 advantage for the Chieftains.

What is up with the chains at Kiggins? Or the field markings? Or is it just us? A couple of weeks ago, after a touchback with the ball spotted at the 20-yard line, a team went exactly 10 yards to pick up a first down at the 30-yard line. Well, a couple plays later, the ball rested in between the 39- and the 40-yard line and the officials ruled a first down. A team was awarded two first downs but did not go the full 20 yards. How is that possible?

This week, Paul Danzer reports that he saw a similar deal. After a touchback, the offensive team moved to the ball between the 29- and 30-yard lines. He swears the ball was not touching the 30-yard line. The officials asked for a measurement, and the chains came out.

First of all, officials should not need the sticks after a touchback to determine the initial first down of an ensuing drive. If the ball is touching the 30, it is a first down. If is short, even by an inch, it is not a first down.

Regardless, the chains were stretched, and it was determined it was a first down. Even though the ball was between the 29 and 30, and the nose of the ball was not touching the 30.

Now, there could be a strange explanation for this. There are a few tweaks to the rules for high school officials when spotting the ball, things we do not see on TV on Saturdays and Sundays. I have noticed that it appears, at times, that the chain at the original position of the first down is placed at the back of the ball instead of the front of the ball.  I am not sure if this is a high school rule, but it would explain how there could be a first down six or eight inches shy of 10 yards.

Sure is frustrating to watch, though. I’ll make a few calls this week to figure out if there is a weird high school spot rule that would make these scenarios possible.

Camas 55, Prairie 7

Papermakers put up a double-nickel on the Falcons. 

Camas coaches and players, don’t read this first paragraph. This is your warning: For the rest of us, we can talk about the rest of the season. We are not bound to taking it “one game at a time.” Looking at the schedule, the Papermakers appear to be well on their way to a 9-0 season. They have already handled the challenges of Timberline, Skyview, and Mountain View. They have already rolled in two other games. This fine season could turn into something special.

But let’s not forget that the goal for the 2010 Papermakers is to become the first team from Camas to win a state playoff game. So even though they know they will be “favored” to win the rest of their regular-season games, the coaching staff will be reminding the players that they should be playing each game with a playoff mindset.

Sure looks like that is what the Papermakers did Friday night in another impressive showing.

By the way, the reason I used “favored” in quotation marks is I always get a kick out of hearing about upsets and underdogs and favorites in high school sports. I think we can all agree that Camas is pretty darn good. Most of us would be surprised to see Camas lose in league play this year. That’s not a knock on the league. It is a testament to the way Camas is playing. With that said, there really are no favorites or underdogs in high school sports. There is no line, no odds. At least, none that I know of. And if there is someone out there posting lines and taking bets on high school football in Southwest Washington, well, I don’t want to know.

Marshall does it again: Zack Marshall is a fantasy football freak. (OK, just like betting, I hope no one really has a high school fantasy football league.) But if we did, Marshall would be a first-round pick. 

Marshall scored three more touchdowns Friday night, giving him 11 touchdowns in the first five games of the season. Marshall had two rushing TDs against Prairie, moving his total to nine on the season. He also returned a kickoff for a touchdown, the second time he has done that.

Time flies by: Not sure if the rule has changed, and we did not have a reporter at this game, but I assume the second half went by in a hurry. Camas had  48-0 lead at the half. That would mean a running clock was used in the second half because the score was so lopsided. 

Nice game, even if it was a short outing: Camas quarterback Logan Grindy was 8 for 9 for 180 yards with a TD pass and a TD run. We imagine he did not have too many opportunities to pass after the first two quarters. 

Heritage 27, Grant 26

Timberwolves pick up first win of the season in thrilling fashion. 

O’Dell shines again for Timberwolves:
 Riley O’Dell continued his impressive play at quarterback for Heritage, and this time he helped his team to its first win of the season.

O’Dell completed 27 of 33 passes for 388 yards and two touchdowns, plus he rushed for two touchdowns in the one-point win.

His 1-yard touchdown plunge with 40 seconds left was the game-winner.

Uh-oh, not again:
For a while, it appeared the Timberwolves were going to taste defeat after another close game. Heritage lost a late lead in Week 2, went into overtime against Skyview in Week 3, lost by a point to Mountain View in Week 4, and then was trailing in the closing minutes this week.

This time, though, the Heritage defense recovered a fumble as Grant was trying to run out the clock. O’Dell and the offense got one more shot, and the Timberwolves converted. 

Top target:
With 388 yards passing, there were plenty of receivers for O’Dell to find. He found Ben Lyons the most. Lyons finished with seven catches for 159 yards and a touchdown. Michael Rivers caught the other TD pass.

Special win:
About a half-dozen football players are throwers on the Heritage track and field team. Early Friday, they learned that their coach, Lee Cave, had passed away. Junior Zach Hall said the throwers wanted to honor Cave and his NGU spirit. NGU means Never Give Up. 

The Timberwolves showed Friday they are not going to give up, and they got a win.

Kelso 28, Fort Vancouver 20

Trappers just miss on comeback attempt. 

Strange game, from one half to the other:
 Kelso led 28-0 at the break. Blowout, right? Well, not exactly. The Trappers rallied, and not just garbage-time points. The Trappers scored a touchdown in the third quarter, then scored twice in the fourth quater, including one late to make it a one-touchdown (plus two-point conversion) game. The Trappers did, indeed, get the ball back, and got into Kelso territory before losing the ball on downs with 30 seconds to play.

Here is the breakdown from Fort coach Cal Szueber:
In the first half, Kelso had 224 yard rushing, 268 total yards from scrimmage. In the second half, Kelso rushed 12 times for 10 yards.

Fort ended up gaining 118 yards in the first half, then 234 yards in the second half, just missing on that final play. The fourth-down play with 30 seconds left was a pass into the end zone.

Stevenson 21, Ridgefield 12

Stevenson is 5-0! Stevenson is 5-0! Stevenson is 5-0! 

No secret anymore:
 Prior to the season, the Stevenson coaching staff only half-jokingly told one of our reporters to not write much about Stevenson. You see, the coaches liked that nobody really paid much attention to Stevenson.

Well, at 5-0, Stevenson is getting plenty of attention. The Bulldogs remain atop the Trico League standings with three league wins. Toledo also is 3-0. A few tough games remain on the schedule, but Stevenson will not be sneaking up on anybody.

Early lead:
 Stevenson scored three first-half touchdowns, then held off Ridgefield. Russell Kyle had two TD passes from Zach Castro and Kevin Jaco had a rushing TD.

Ridgefield got scores from Marcus Deal and Dylan Young, but because of the missed extra points, the Spudders were never within one score of the Bulldogs.

La Center 21, Ilwaco 6

Wildcats get defensive in win. 

No problem when playing like this:
 Winning becomes easier when a team’s defense is on its game. La Center held Ilwaco to 127 yards from scrimmage Friday night. It was closer to 40 yards for the game until Ilwaco scored on an 80-yard play late in the game. That’s called domination.

All sorts of ways to score: La Center scored on a 70-yard pass from Nick Deotsch to Gunnar Lowery, got another score on Ryan Kulla’s 5-yard run, and also got a defensive touchdown when Brody Hollingshead returned a fumble seven yards for a TD.

 A few more notes:

… Washougal had another strong showing before fading down the stretch in a 36-23 loss to R.A. Long. The game was tied at 15 at the half.

… Hockinson scored first in its loss to talented Tumwater. Conner Perry scored on a 50-yard TD pass from Jess Krahn for an early 7-0 lead. 

… Woodland’s Adam Shoup had a 300-yard passing game in a loss to Mark Morris. Shoup finished 20 of 35 for 321 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed for a TD.

… Quick look at the standings shows Skyview and Evergreen atop the 4A GSHL. (Yes, that’s true. Both are 1-0, with Union not having played a league game yet.) Camas and Kelso are each at 3-0 in the 3A GSHL. Mark Morris is 2-0 in the 2A GSHL, with R.A. Long at 1-0. And we already noted Stevenson and Toledo in the Trico.

Week 6 games:
Skyview at Battle Ground 7 p.m.

Kelso vs. Evergreen, 5 p.m. at McKenzie Stadium
Union vs. Heritage, 8 p.m. at McKenzie Stadium
Hudson’s Bay at Camas, 7 p.m. at Doc Harris Stadium
Columbia River vs. Prairie, 7 p.m. at District Stadium
Mark Morris at Hockinson, 7 p.m.
Woodland at R.A. Long, 7 p.m.
Crook County (Ore.) at Washougal, 7 p.m.
Castle Rock at La Center, 7 p.m.
Kalama at Ridgefield, 7 p.m.
Ilwaco at White Salmon, 7 p.m.
Stevenson at Toledo, 7 p.m.
King’s Way Christian at Oakville, 7 p.m.
Vancouver Christian at Winlock, 7 p.m.

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