Day After Report: Week 10
We knew Camas was going to win.
We had a good idea Union was going to fare well. It wasn’t a lock, but we were not surprised when the Titans prevailed.
We had no idea Skyview was going to face Bellevue, though.
What’s that, you say? Skyview faced Newport of Bellevue? No. I was there. That was not Newport. That had to be the real Bellevue, the real deal, the real oh-my-gosh-that-was-incredible Bellevue. Not Newport of Bellevue.
OK, so my eyes played tricks on me. That was Newport of Bellevue, and none of us saw that coming. Beating Skyview was one thing. The way the Knights did it? Incredible.
In the 3A ranks, we were not surprised to see Columbia River advance. Every coach in the 3A GSHL knew that the top seed had a good draw for Week 10. That’s the benefit of winning a league title.
Mountain View, on the other hand, had a tougher road as the No. 3 seed. So it was no surprise to see the Thunder’s season come to an end.
In Class 2A, we say goodbye to Hockinson while congratulating the Hawks on making it to the district playoff, one game from state, for the second year in a row. We also say goodbye to Ridgefield while congratulating the Spudders for making it to the district playoff, one game from state, in their first year back as a 2A program.
And in 1A, La Center and Woodland proved all year to be the best of the Trico League and then proved it again in Week 10. Both have advanced to state.
Here are some Day After Report notes a few days late. (Hey, it’s playoff time. There were a couple games Saturday, and you know I never write during an NFL Sunday.)
CAMAS 43, SOUTH KITSAP 12
The Papermakers are a perfect 10-0, hoping to make another long run in the state playoffs.
Long drive, good conversation, and some numbers research: I was in Spanaway to watch Union play Friday night, while Bryan Levesque, friend of the Day After Report, watched Camas take on South Kitsap.
After I filed my game report and got a bite to eat, I left the Tacoma area a little after midnight. Using my hands-free device (seriously), I took a call from Bryan. Some two hours later, as I was pulling into my garage, we said goodbye. The entire conversation was football. Which, as you know, means it was one of the greatest conversations of all time. Because, you know, anything to do with talking about football is great conversation. (Also, this is proof that I was using a hands-free device. I can’t keep a cell phone to my ear for more than 10 minutes at a time without my arm going numb.)
One of the topics was Camas’ defense. Specifically, how Camas’ defense is even better than advertised because, it occurred to Bryan, that just about all the points scored against Camas this season were the kind that were scored Friday night: Late, when it did not matter much.
So Sunday night, I went on a trek through 360preps.com to prove Bryan’s theory.
Through 10 games, Camas opponents have scored 154 points. Even I know that’s 15.4 points per game. But here is where it gets fun. The Papermakers have given up 67 percent of those points after they have led by 30 or more points.
In Week 3, for example, the Papermakers gave up 14 points after leading 45-0. In Week 4, they led 39-0 before giving up 14 points. It was 63-7 in Week 6 before giving up 21 more meaningless points. In Week 8, it was 55-0 before giving up 21. And in this week’s game, it was a 43-0 lead before South Kitsap found the end zone.
In Week 7, the Papermakers never led by as many as 30 points. Didn’t matter, though, because they did not give up any points that week.
Week 5 is really the only time the Camas defense was challenged this season when the game was on the line. Skyview actually led 17-14 in the second quarter. But the Camas defense shut out the Storm the rest of the game and the Papermakers won going away, 42-17.
In all, 103 of the 154 points have come after Camas led by 30 or more points.
More numbers: On offense, the Papermakers are the second-highest scoring team in the state, according to data provided by the ScoreCzar. They can get the points in a variety of ways.
Nate Beasley is closing in on 1,000 yards rushing. He now has 17 rushing touchdowns. Zach Eagle has 801 receiving yards, with seven TD receptions. And quarterback Reilly Hennessey is completing 59 percent of his passes and has thrown for 2,212 yards and 22 touchdowns.
UNION 39, GRAHAM-KAPOWSIN 22
Trent Cowan does it all in a win for the Titans.
It was so good, I’m noting the performance here again: If you read my game story, you already know about Trent Cowan. But here, in a nutshell, is what he did Friday night to help his team win.
1) Intercepts a pass with 10:19 left in the first quarter, with Graham-Kapowsin already up 2-0. That leads to a Union touchdown run by Leon Siofele.
2) Intercepts a pass with 11 minutes left in the second quarter, stopping a G-K drive and then returning the interception 77 yards to the 2-yard line. Siofele scored on the next play for a 14-2 Union lead.
3) After G-K scored to make it 14-9, Cowan was a big part of Union’s next drive. On a second-and-13 play, he caught a pass from Nolan Henry for an 11-yard gain. On the next play, Cowan lined up behind center in the Wildcat formation and rushed five yards for a first down. Later, he caught a pass for 9 yards. And then, on a fourth-down play, he caught a 34-yard TD pass from Henry to make it 21-9 with 17 seconds left in the first half.
4) Intercepts a G-K pass close to the end zone on the final play of the first half.
5) Caught a 24-yard pass on Union’s opening drive of the second half, which Siofele capped with a TD pass from Henry.
6) He also added a field goal.
On defense, he finished with his three picks, plus he knocked away two other passes. On offense, Cowan caught seven passes for 106 yards, plus he rushed for 44 yards. He accounted for 150 of Union’s 268 yards of offense.
Uh-oh: There was a bit of good news and bad news for the Union Titans in the opening minute of the game. The good news was the Titans made a defensive stand after a long run by Graham-Kapowsin on the first play from scrimmage. Teague James ran 56 yards to the Union 2-yard line. However, two plays later, the Titans forced a fumble and recovered on the 1. That was good for them, of course.
However, it was not exactly the field position one would want for a sophomore starting quarterback in his first playoff game.
Nolan Henry got the play from his coaches, then in the huddle, he acknowledged after the game, he called the wrong formation. Easy safety for the Graham-Kapowsin defense.
Here is the best news for the Titans, though. Their young quarterback, in his first playoff start, could have let that mistake get to him. But it did not rattle him. Henry finished 12 of 17 for 184 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions.
“I needed to forget that and move on,” Henry said. “From that point on, I felt I was more poised the rest of the game.”
Special teams: Union led 28-9 early in the third but the Eagles scored the next 13 points to get some momentum. James Munson ended that mo, though. He returned a kickoff some 75 yards for a touchdown, giving Union some more breathing room.
NEWPORT 56, SKYVIEW 35
A stunner. Not necessarily the Skyview loss, but the way Newport won.
Twitter reaction: With some of the messages I received on Twitter during this game Saturday, I got the feeling I was not the only one shocked by this development. The Seattle Times asked me what was going on down here.
It’s quite possible, as I was posting the scores, that some thought I had accidentally switched teams. That it should have been Skyview in the lead.
I believe my halftime tweet went something like this: Newport 42, Skyview 7, and it’s not even that close.
At that point, Newport had more than 400 yards rushing. Yes, at halftime.
I hope Skyview fans, in time, will come to appreciate what they witnessed. I know that might sound weird, but hear me out. I see blowouts all the time. But usually, those are by superior teams over weak teams. The haves vs. the have-nots. Those don’t impress me.
But in Saturday’s game, Skyview was not outclassed, or overmatched. Skyview has some of the best athletes in the state. It’s just that on this one night, everything went perfect for Newport. It was a perfect plan, and perfect execution.
As a football fan, when one sees perfection, if even for just a little bit, it must be appreciated. And on this particular night, it lasted a lot longer than a little bit.
Hey, I cannot stand that college football team from Eugene. (Except for that lineman from Hockinson. Nick Cody, you know I love ya!) Anyway, not a big fan of the Ducks, but c’mon, even us “haters” have to appreciate what that offense can do.
Newport put on an Oregon-like display Saturday night. Fans of the game of football have to respect that.
Touchdown Skyview: So the Storm go into halftime down 35. While it was still possible to come back, they pretty much knew it was over. It would have been a “sports miracle” to actually win that game at that point.
Still, give them credit. They sure tried.
With that, they got to feel better about themselves. They scored four touchdowns in the second half, and it was not a case of going up against the second- or third-string defense. Newport knew Skyview had an explosive offense.
In fact, the Storm scored first in the second half. After another Newport TD, Skyview scored the next two to make it a 22-point game with 11:51 left in the game. No way was Newport taking out its starters.
So let’s hear it for the Storm, for not folding in their final game of the year. Jacob Dennis scored a touchdown in the first half, then got another in the second half. Daniel Thompson got the crowd fired up with his 67-yard catch-and-run for a score. And Forrest Russell ended his career with a touchdown reception.
Skyview’s Game MVP: Don’t worry. I have not forgotten quarterback Jordan Berni. He was simply amazing in that second half.
We all knew he was good, even last year. However, Berni was backing up a Division-I talent in Kieran McDonagh. So Berni waited for his turn. He knew he’d only have one starting season in high school football. Then he excelled.
First, take a look at Saturday’s numbers: He was 19 of 29 for 277 yards and four touchdown passes with no interceptions. He also rushed for 42 yards and a touchdown.
For the season, Berni completed 65 percent of his passes and threw for 1,948 yards and 19 touchdowns.
COLUMBIA RIVER 27, BAINBRIDGE 9
The Chieftains return to state.
The tradition continues: It had been a few years, but the Chieftains are going back to the state playoffs. This is coach John O’Rourke’s ninth appearance in the round of 16.
Streakin’! No denying it has been a strange season for the Chieftains. They all had high expectations. Then they went 1-3 in the non-league schedule. Injuries likely played a role in one or two of the losses, but still, their confidence had to be shaken a little.
Not too much, though. The Chieftains have reeled off six wins in a row, including five in the 3A Greater St. Helens League to take the championship.
Here’s the best part for the Chieftains. They don’t think they have peaked just yet. Even Friday’s win, a dominant performance from the defense, was not a full performance for River. The players acknowledged they were sloppy and really only played well for two quarters.
“We have yet to play a complete game,” River running back Remick Kawawaki said.
Maybe next week it will happen.
Because the Chieftains turned their season around, they have a next week.
LA CENTER 48, ELMA 14
Wildcats score on first four possessions to end this one early.
Back where they belong: The Wildcats are back in the Class 1A state playoffs for the third time in four years and the fourth time overall.
Their previous three trips in 1A have been short and not so sweet.
In 2006, they traveled to Bellingham and lost 21-8 to Meridian. In 2009, they won the Trico title but lost 49-21 to Nooksack Valley in Battle Ground. Finally, there was last year’s trip to Sumner that ended with a 27-6 loss to Cascade Christian.
Their last state win came in 2004 as a 2A school, when they beat Mount Baker 24-8 in the first round before losing 34-7 in Everett to Archbishop Murphy.
The Wildcats did not know Friday where they would be playing in the first round of state. They will “host” the game but at a stadium, not their home, grass field.
The Wildcats were just happy to be playing close to home and riding some momentum.
“It’s always better to be closer to home,” said junior fullback Conner Fulton. “But wherever we play, we’re going to do whatever we need to do to get it done.”
Got to get better: Even with their decisive win, Wildcats coach John Lambert wasn’t satisfied with his team’s performance.
“We’re just not hitting on all cylinders like I know we can,” said Lambert of his 10-0 league and district champions. “We need to get better to get to where we want to be.”
Lambert probably could be accused of picking a few nits, but he did have a couple of causes for concern – two dropped passes of what should have been easy first downs; seven penalties for 65 yards; a couple of blown coverages, and missed tackles on the muddy La Center turf.
“We knew they’d make some plays,” said senior RB/DB Tyrone Kulla. “We messed up a couple of times, but we flushed all that and just focused on getting the ball back and scoring.”
LC certainly covered for its mistakes much better than Elma, which lost three fumbles (all of which turned into touchdowns) and gave up seven plays of 20-plus yards and 13 for double-digit gains.
Twice, Fulton busted through big holes on fourth down to rumble for touchdowns of 44 and 54 yards.
“From what we saw, it looked like they were guessing quite a bit (on defense),” Lambert said, “and what they were doing lent itself to big plays, for both sides. If you guess right against us, you can make a big play in our backfield.
“But if you guess wrong, we’re going to make big plays ourselves.”
WOODLAND 28, TENINO 3
The Beavers are back in state for first time since 2005.
Time consumers: How much of a ball-control contest was this? The teams had only seven possessions apiece.
Tenino started with an 18-play drive on the first possession of the night. Yes, 18 plays!
Tenino repeatedly would get 4 yards on first down then 6 yards on second down. Or 5 yards on first, then 5 yards on second. Or 4 and 4 and 2. Or . . . well, you get the idea. They got a lot of first downs by very little margins.
By the time that initial drive ended, Tenino had used those 18 plays to pick up 69 yards, six first downs, and . . . three points. We would tell you how much time all of this took, but the scoreboard at Woodland was inoperable so we don’t really know. It was about 8 minutes.
But that wasn’t Tenino’s most unusual drive of the game. No, Tenino later had another 18-play drive. This one included two fourth-down conversions, covered all of 50 yards, and resulted in . . . no points.
For the game, Tenino finished with 42 carries for 118 yards and 18 passes for 85 yards — a total of 60 plays for 203 yards.
Woodland had 38 carries for 177 yards and attempted five passes good for 67 yards — 43 plays for 244 yards. Woodland’s total is a bit deceptive because one botched snap from the shotgun formation resulted in a 26-yard loss.
Scoreboard, Scoreboard, Scoreboard: Apparently because of the weather, the crew at Woodland had trouble with the scoreboard all night. They got it up and running for a few minutes at the start of the third quarter, but other than that the board was dark and the game time was kept by officials on the field.
But Woodland more than made up for the scoreboard shortcomings with the very cool microphone-on-the-referee feature. Just like a college or NFL stadium, when the official announces a penalty or has to explain something, it goes out over the PA system so the entire crowd can hear it.
Getting it done: The results of Woodland’s seven possessions in the game:
Missed field-goal attempt.
Lost of downs.
End of game.
That’s rather efficient.
Count it: Woodland and Tenino both have the nickname “Beavers.” Before the game, the Woodland PA announcer (who is excellent, by the way) announced: “Take this one to Vegas; I’m guaranteeing a Beavvveeeerrrr victory.”
Nice game Tenino QB: Tenino quarterback Mac Shaw ran 27 times for 76 yards and completed 10 of 17 passes for 85 yards. That means he was directly involved in 44 of the Beavers’ 60 plays and accounted for 161 of their 203 yards.
Lineman attention: Big night for Woodland lineman Zach Lacey. On Tenino’s lengthy opening possession, he made a tackle for a 1-yard loss that helped stop the march short of the end zone. In the second quarter, he recovered a fumble that set up Woodland’s second touchdown, and then made a key block on Eli Whitmire’s TD run.
Thanks to Greg Jayne for the notes from Woodland. Thanks to Rene Ferran for the notes from La Center.