Day After Report: For love of the Raiders, for love of all football
By the time most of you read this, I will have had my first In-n-Out Burger of the weekend.
Yep, it’s a road trip version of the Day After Report.
(Don’t worry. Someone else is driving right now. I’m good, but I’m not good enough to drive and write a Day After Report at the same time.)
Where are we going?
Oh, just the promised land.
Sure, the Raiders are having their struggles, but they are still my team. Silver and Black forever.
I compare my fandom to a marriage. My wife and I have been married for 17 years. We have been angry at each other from time to time, but we still love each other. Well, I’ve loved the Raiders a lot longer than my wife, so I’m not splitting with them!
Last year, if you recall, I drove down by myself for the Chargers game. Even though the Raiders weren’t very good last year, I had a lot of confidence going into that game. Sure enough, the Raiders did win that Sunday night game. This year, I’m not so confident. The Chargers are playing well. The Raiders are … well, you know. But I will still have a blast.
Have I told you lately how much I love football?
So this week in high school football was the week before the week. You know the week I’m talking about. We’ve been waiting for Week 7 since, well, since at least Week 1.
It’s Camas vs. Union. It’s No. 2 in the state vs. No. 3. Yeah, it’s kind of a big deal.
Also, in Week 7, Columbia River vs. Skyview. It is one of the biggest non-league rivalry games going right now. You might recall that game gained national attention last year. Something about a blocked field goal gone awry for one team, gone awesome for another.
By the way, this sets up a great finish to the regular season. In Week 8, it will be Woodland and Hockinson. Right now, those two teams are 6-0 and ranked in the Class 2A state poll.
Then Week 9 will be Skyview vs. Union and Columbia River vs. Kelso. It’s go time!
But to get to Week 7, we had to first get through Week 6. Here are a few notes from a few games from this past week.
CAMAS 77, BATTLE GROUND 21
The Papermakers scored 56 points in the first half.
Kelly gets it done: Bryan Kelly touched the ball four times in the game. He scored three touchdowns. (What is wrong with you, Bryan? Why not four touchdowns?)
His first carry of the game was a 1-yard gain. Clearly, he was not satisfied with that.
On his next carry, with the Papermakers facing a third-and-9, Kelly used his strength, then his speed, to score on a 72-yard run. A defender had him about six yards from scrimmage. Even from the other side of the field, we could see Kelly’s jersey getting stretched, pulled by the defender. It slowed down Kelly for a step, maybe two, but he refused to go down. The defender did fall down, lost his grip, and Kelly was gone.
Kelly finished with three carries for 88 yards and two touchdowns. Plus he caught a 25-yard touchdown pass on the final play of the first half.
What a half: Speaking of the first half, Camas was 7 for 7 on first-half possessions, all touchdowns. Plus the Papermakers scored a defensive touchdown.
Quarterback Liam Fitzgerald threw for 253 yards and did not play in the second half.
Share the wealth: This was the second game I’ve seen (or noticed) that Camas uses three kickers for the extra points. All three were perfect in this one. Eleven touchdowns, 11 extra points. Well done Caleb Lightbourn, Michael Boyle, and Brendan Geignenmiller.
Price is so right: Is there anybody in the 4A GSHL playing better football than James Price? Wide receiver. Defensive back. He excels every game.
The best part of this is not too many people (outside of Camas) saw this coming.
Oh, don’t get me wrong. He was a good player last year. The only junior starter on the top-ranked team in the state. He made several plays throughout the season.
This year, though? He’s dominating.
He uses his speed to score.
He uses his strength to get the ball in coverage.
Seriously, I’ve watched him enough to say he has turned into a great high school football player.
And in a way, he represents this entire Camas team. This was the group after THE GROUP. So many expected so much from last year’s team. And that was a great team. This year? There were question marks based on experience going into the season. Now? This group looks pretty amazing, too.
That had to feel good for the Tigers: Sure, the game got out of hand in a hurry. But the Battle Ground Tigers had a lead in this game. And it was no fluke.
It is no secret that Battle Ground’s offense is better than Battle Ground’s defense. But this was a test against one of the best defenses in the state.
Yet there was Battle Ground taking the opening possession of the game and airing it out against the mighty Papermakers. The Tigers went 79 yards on eight plays. Quarterback Gunner Talkington was 5 for 5 on the drive for 72 yards. He found Parker Randle on a 36-yard touchdown pass for a quick 7-0 lead.
SKYVIEW 31, MOUNTAIN VIEW 0
Storm shut down Thunder attack
Start of something big? The Storm played Camas tough for 23 minutes last week. Then it was all Camas. Well, Mountain View certainly is not at the level of Camas, but the Storm felt good about their bounce-back performance, a shutout in the 4A GSHL.
Linebacker Marquis Mitchell noted that if the Storm do what they feel they can do, a league title is still a possibility. You never know what could happen to other teams, he said.
Sure enough, there is a scenario that three teams could tie for the league title. Camas beat Skyview. What if Union beats Camas, and then Skyview beats Union?
Regardless, the Storm know they have a pretty good shot of making the playoffs.
“I think we’re capable of a lot,” said Skyview quarterback Zac Shomler. “There are so many things to clean up. A lot of things that if we fix, we can be phenomenal. We could achieve a lot.”
Power mode: The Storm took command with a 17-0 lead by taking up half of the second quarter on one touchdown drive.
Blake Ingram scored on an 8-yard touchdown run that capped a 15-play, 79-yard drive. With penalties, the Storm actually had to gain more yards to finish the drive in the end zone.
Shomler was 6 of 8 for 55 yards. He found Skyler Martin for a gain of eight on a fourth-and-1 play. Ingram, meanwhile, had 47 yards on six carries.
Mountain View’s progress: We all knew the Thunder were young and inexperienced going into the season. Now six weeks into the year, injuries have forced players into trying new positions. The Thunder had a lineman in Friday’s game who had not played offensive line until Wednesday of this week.
Then there was Eric Campbell who was playing defensive end for the first time.
Mountain View coach Adam Mathieson was not using this as an excuse. On the contrary, he explained this as a way of celebrating his team’s effort Friday night.
Take Campbell, for example. The coaches taught him this week how to read a screen pass, how to not be fooled when the offensive lineman lets him go. So there was Campbell not taking the bait, dropping back just like a veteran defensive lineman, and there was Campbell making an interception.
“In spite of the score, I really feel like we’re getting better,” Mathieson said.
WASHOUGAL 48, HUDSON’S BAY 6
Panthers score 42 in a row to beat the Eagles.
Nice to see you: I like doubleheaders because they give me opportunities to see teams that I might not otherwise see. Like Washougal and Bay.
Congrats to the Panthers.
My apologies if I missed some of the stats. The numbers were a bit hard to read from the press box, and the team switched quarterbacks often. I did talk to some of the players after the game to try to get the names and numbers right. Hope it worked. Either way, I think it’s cool that Washougal uses a two-quarterback system. Kyron Carlson had two TD passes and Monte Georgianna had one.
Impressive: I was impressed with Hudson’s Bay running back Nehemiah McDougal. He had 33 yards on his first five carries, a first-quarter touchdown drive for the Eagles. Unfortunately, he was injured on that fifth carry. He would return much later in the game for two more carries, but he was obviously hurting.
Why was I impressed? Because he came back into the game after Bay was trailing by 42. It is not easy to will oneself back into a contest when it is clear the outcome has been decided. McDougal gave it a try, telling me and everyone who was at Kiggins Bowl that he still cared, no matter the score.
Yet another reason I love football. Thanks Nehemiah.
A few more thoughts from Week 6 …
Vote Eli Whitmire for Woodland mayor! Seven touchdowns? One game? He delivers. Funny story about this one. We had one of our stringers out there and he filed his stats. Whitmire scored seven touchdowns and he only had something like 12 touches. We figured it was an error. So we called the coach at midnight. Sure enough, the stats were just about spot-on. Seven touchdowns! … Hockinson won again. Nothing shocking there. Week 8 is going to be epic in the 2A GSHL. But here is what we are really looking forward to in regard to our 2A schools: Week 10. It has been a long, long time since a 2A team from our readership area has won a Week 10 playoff game. Is this the year?
OK, sorry for the shorter Day After Report. But I’m not working this weekend. 🙂
(Well, maybe a little bit. Perhaps I will update stats tonight from the hotel room.)
But for now, we’re just about to stop in Redding. In-n-Out Burger! You understand!