Day After Report: That’s just a dumb, dumb rule

Camas. Wow. What more to say other than “Camas.”

Union got another road win. Eventually the Titans do plan to play in Clark County, right?

Heritage is 2-0 for the first time in school history. Or second time in history. There was some confusion with this. Tim Martinez wrote second time in history but then was told by a Heritage official that it had never happened before. However, I thought Heritage went 9-0 in 2000. Maybe they were just undefeated in league play?

There are other good storylines out there, too.

Hockinson is 2-0 with convincing wins.

Fort Vancouver got a win in Oregon. It is Fort’s first win outside of Clark County since 2007.

Woodland has to feel good with such an easy win over a rival.

Still a couple teams from Southwest Washington to play on Saturday but I’ve got to get this report started now.

Before first, I must say this will be a bit smaller report than usual. It is possible another reporter will either add to this report or put up another report. But as soon as I file this one, I’m done for the weekend. I’m heading to the Promised Land: Raiders home opener.

Here’s a pic of of a friend I met last year in the stadium:


As you can see, all Raider fans are awesome.

So anyway, back to the Report:

Seriously, this is dumb.

In high school football, dead-ball penalties against both teams do not offset. The officials actually step off the yardage against one team, then step off the yardage against the other team. Looks silly. But the end result, usually, is the ball is placed at the spot where all of this started.

But not always.

And here is the dumb part.

In the Skyview-Woodinville game, the Skyview Storm picked up a first down at the Woodinville 9-yard line. After the play, one of the Falcons and one of the Storm decided to have their own little battle. The official ruled unsportsmanslike conduct against Skyview, then unsportsmanlike conduct against Woodinville.

Now, in most football worlds, this would offset. The play was over, after all. So the next play would begin at the 9-yard line. Right?

Well, take a guess as to how the ball was moved to the 12-yard line.

I’ll wait.

Figured it out yet?


Well, try this:
The officials stepped off 15 yards against Skyview to the 24-yard line. Then, it was time to step off the penalty yardage against the defense. But it’s not 15 yards in this case. Because the Storm were so close to the end zone, the enforcement of the penalty is half the distance. So Skyview was awarded 12 yards instead of 15.

See what just happened there? The defense “gained” three yards.

So I spoke to an official after the game, and yep, that’s the way it works out. The official, who I am not naming, acknowledged that this is a bad rule.

Or, as I said, dumb.

There is more to this. Apparently, if an official sees who “started” the altercation, and still gives the penalty to both teams, then the team that started the altercation is supposed to be accessed the penalty first.

So this could have been worse for the Storm. It could have been a 5-yard penalty to the 4-yard line (half the distance from the 9) and then a 15-yard penalty against them to the 19-yard line. But in Friday’s game, officials walked off the penalty against Skyview first.

See where this is going?

You realize that if the offense has the ball, at say, the 6-yard line, the defense now has incentive to pick a fight after a play. I’m not suggesting anyone would coach this, but consider:

If the ball is at the 6-yard line, a defensive player could start talking trash or pushing, hoping to get the offensive player to push back, hoping to draw a penalty. If the official just sees the defense, it would be a 3-yard penalty to the 3-yard line. If the official only sees the offense retaliate, it would be a 15-yard penalty against the offense, ball back to the 21. And if the official rules against both teams, but gives the defense the penalty first, the ball would initially move to the 3-yard line (3-yard penalty on defense) then all the way back to the 18-yard line (15-yard penalty against the offense). And even if officials rule against the offense first, the ball would move back to the 21, then ahead half the distance to the 10-yard line. The defense wins again!

This is nuts! This is dumb.

Statistically, shouldn’t the defense actually try this? The defense, in this case, would risk a 3-yard penalty for the chance to get the offense moved back up to 12 yards?

I really hope I’m wrong, that I misheard the explanation from this official. Please, please tell me I’m wrong.

I don’t think I’m wrong, though.

But I know this rule is wrong.

Or dumb.

Maybe both.

Storm had their moments, but not enough of them

Touchdown vulture: In fantasy football, a touchdown vulture is a running back who comes in and scores on short-yardage situations. The other running backs might have gained most of the yards to get in position to score, but it is the touchdown vulture who actually finds the end zone.

Woodinville’s Mitchell Jones is Washington high school football’s touchdown vulture. And trust me, that’s a compliment. Jones had nine carries for 18 yards, but scored four touchdowns against the Storm.

Blake Ingram was all over the place: After the game, a Skyview teammate came up to Blake Ingram and asked him a simple question.

“Did you have 47 tackles or 74 tackles?”

Easy mistake to make. Because it seemed like Ingram was in on just about every tackle for the Skyview defense.

None of the Storm were thrilled with the result, but Ingram still appreciates this squad.

“Our whole team played with heart,” Ingram said. “We’ll always play with heart. I’ll always love my team for that.”

Credit Woodinville: Skyview coach Steve Kizer noted his team’s miscues but also wanted to give credit to the Falcons.

“They didn’t want to go 0-2,” Kizer said. “They played harder than we did, no doubt.”

Emmy drive: Josh Emmy had his own personal two-play touchdown drive for the Storm. He rushed for 25 yards on the first play, then broke free for a 40-yard touchdown run on the second play of the possession, pulling Skyview within five points at 14-9.

“I gotta thank the O-line,” Emmy said.

Yeah, the hole was that big. Big enough, in fact, that one didn’t need to be as fast as Emmy to make that play.

“You could have put a lineman in there, and he could have scored on that one,” Emmy said.


A whole lotta yards for quarterback Gunner Talkington

Impressive. Most impressive: This has got to be one of the best stat lines of the week in all of Washington, let alone Southwest Washington. Battle Ground quarterback Gunner Talkington completed 23 of 30 passes for 372 yards and four touchdowns. Oh, and he rushed for 120 yards. That’s 492 yards of offense. (Didn’t even need my calculator for that!)

Chris Waters caught all four touchdown passes, by the way. Dude had a game, too, with 10 receptions for 172 yards.

But Talkington. Wow. Eight yards from 500.

As Darth Vader would say … Well, you can hear it from Darth Vader:

Battle Ground coach Larry Peck had some things to say about Talkington, too.

“We had a really strong game from our sophomore quarterback, both running and throwing, making plays when we had to have them,” Peck said.

Hey Tigers, Darth Vader said it better, but Peck determines playing time so best to just to listen to him.

This game, which featured 67 points, was scoreless after the first quarter. Spanaway Lake took the lead first. Then Spanaway Lake cut the Battle Ground lead to two points in the fourth quarter.

“It was a great win for us because we fought through some adversity,” Peck said. “We could have cracked, but we didn’t.”


COLUMBIA RIVER 35, MARK MORRIS 0 (Thursday night)
The Chieftains have opened up with consecutive shutouts.

Journalists love guys like this: If you read my game story, you read that Hunter Graham is very confident in his team’s abilities. We journalists love a confident guy who gives confident quotes. We journalists don’t care about “bulletin board” material and the like. We care about fun quotes.

(To be fair, because he is a high school athlete, I did ask Hunter if he was sure he wanted me to use his words. I’m a nice guy (usually) so if he would have reconsidered, I just wouldn’t have used those quotes. He was fine with what he said, though.)

After our conversation, I told his coach what Hunter had said. John O’Rourke paused for a second. Shrugged a bit. And then …

“When 18-year-olds get an opinion, that’s what you get,” O’Rourke said.

Hey, it’s not like Graham said anything negative toward an opponent. Quite the contrary. He just believes his team is awesome. Nothing wrong with that.

Defense dominates, helps offense: I am looking forward to seeing the Columbia River offense get in synch. Didn’t happen much on Thursday, but you can see it’s close.

There were a few times when quarterback Gabe Evenson threw the ball to open areas of the field, but his receivers had broke off the route or turned the other way. When they all get on the same page, those throws would be touchdowns.

So while the offense might not have started off so fast Thursday, the defense made sure it did not matter. Columbia River has won with back-to-back shutouts to start the season.

Columbia River ruled field position all night, the defense setting up the offense. Columbia River scored on drives that started on the Mark Morris 23-yard line, 34-yard line, 25-yard line, 37-yard line, and at the 50.

Odd plays, odd bounces: Columbia River’s Nathan Hawthorne created the first turnover of the game with a hustle play.

Mark Morris threw a backward pass and the Monarchs stopped going after the ball, thinking it was an incomplete pass. Hawthorne ran past a Monarch and jumped on the ball before it rolled out of bounds. River ball.

Five plays later, Hawthorne scored a touchdown on a 4-yard pass from Evenson.

Columbia River also recovered the ball on the second-half kickoff. The Chieftains kicked off. It wasn’t an onside kick, but it worked just the same. The Monarchs allowed the ball to bounce on the grass, and it seemed like no one but the Chieftains reacted. Easy recovery. Five plays later, Vincent Daniels scored on an 11-yard run for a 21-0 lead. Ball game.


Hawk Power!

(These notes provided by Rene Ferran. Thanks for sending them in so quick, Rene.)

The man of Steele returns: Rick Steele hated giving up the title of being the only head football coach the Hockinson program had ever known.

But after nine seasons, Steele got a promotion at his job and moved to a day shift, making it difficult for him to make it to practice on time.

Brian Schott took the reins over last season, but when the job opened again, Hockinson AD Brian Lehner called Steele to ask if he was interested in coming back.

Was he ever.

“It worked out good for me,” said Steele, who returned to shift work and the sidelines in one fell swoop.

Through two weeks, things have worked out a little better than good. The Hawks are 2-0, having outscored opponents 69-3, and they may have discovered their successor to departed starter Jess Krahn, now playing quarterback at Montana State Northern, in Friday’s rout of the Falcons.

“Having Coach Steele back has definitely brought back the fire,” said senior Austen Johnson, who ran for 117 yards and a touchdown Friday. “I couldn’t ask for a better mentor. I’m so glad to have him back.”

One reason is a change in philosophy this year after relying heavily on Krahn’s right arm the past two years.

This season, the Hawks’ theme song comes straight from Olivia Newton-John.

“We looked at the kids coming back on the offensive line, and the running backs we had, and it just made sense to run the football more,” Steele said.

After amassing 331 yards on 48 carries against the Falcons – a 6.9-yard average – Johnson was all smiles.

“All we do at practice is work on our running plays. Hard, hard, hard running all day,” he said.

That may change a little on Monday. Steele had an open competition between junior Gage Seekins and sophomore Mitch Lines to replace Krahn this fall, and Seekins got the start in Week 1 vs. La Center.

Lines started Friday’s game, and he looked poised in directing the offense to almost 500 yards and 23 first downs. Lines’ final line – 11 of 14 for 161 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions.

“The kid just did a great job,” Steele said.

So did he earn the start for next Friday’s game at Castle Rock? Steele chuckled.

“Well, obviously I’ve got to look at the film,” he said. “But he’s looking pretty good.”

Prairie’s point of view: On the other sideline, ninth-year Prairie coach Terry Hyde could only tip his cap to a Hockinson team that held his team to 64 yards and two first downs.

“It’s not that we didn’t make plays. They just made (more) plays,” Hyde said. “You cough the ball up two times early in the game to a good football team, that sets the tone.”

Hyde preached patience with his young squad before the season, and after being shut out by Heritage and Hockinson in the first two weeks, the Falcons now jump into the fire of 3A Greater St. Helens League play next week when they travel to Kelso.

“All these games are good to get things figured out, for developing another piece of the game, for growing,” he said. “But when you get to the first league game, everything else doesn’t matter at that point.”

This and that: Hockinson easily won the time-of-possession battle, holding the ball for 29 minutes, 19 seconds. … The Hawks were 7-of-10 on third-down conversions. … All those plays allowed some Prairie defenders to rack up big numbers. Linebacker Justin Pena had a game-high 11 tackles, while William Prestwich added six and Reuvim Ponomarenko had five.


That’s it for now. (It’s 2:30 a.m. Saturday morning.) Again, there might be more notes added to this later, or perhaps a different report gets published on the blog.

But me, I’m outta here. Got a flight to paradise in a few hours.

Oak Town!

Raider for Life.

Silver and Black Forever.







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