Day After Report: Camas 55, Graham-Kapowsin 6

Who saw this coming?
Well, not sure anyone saw 55-6 coming but at least one fictitious character who makes non-fiction predictions did see a blowout. The Columbian’s own Prep Proletariat said Camas would win by three touchdowns. We’re going to give that one a thumb’s up. Of course, it was more like seven touchdowns, but again, coming into this game, so many folks were thinking these teams were both state championship contenders. After Friday night, well, only one team could make such a statement.

Eight is enough:
The Camas Papermakers were just about perfect. Sure, there is no such thing as a perfect game in football, but Camas was really, really close.
Eight possessions, eight touchdowns. That good enough?
The Papermakers also did it in a hurry. They snapped the ball 17 times in the first half. Scored five touchdowns.

  • TD No. 1: A really, really long drive (for Camas anyway) that went for seven plays in 2 minutes, 22 seconds. Ryan Rushall caught two third-down passes from Jack Colletto, on for 34 yards and the other for 20, leading to a Colletto-to-Cooper McNatt 5-yard TD pass.
  • TD No. 2: Three plays. Colletto found Drake Owen who was trying to get to the end zone, but he fumbled at the 20-yard line. The ball rolled 25 yards into the middle of the end zone and Michael Matthews pounced on it for a TD.
  • TD No. 3: Two plays after G-K failed on a fourth-down play deep in own territory. Colletto found Christian Nghiem for an 11-yd TD play.
  • TD No. 4: Two plays. Colletto fakes the handoff, the G-K defense bites on the fake, then Colletto strolls into the end zone for a 32-yard run.
  • TD No. 5: Three plays. Colletto this time ran for 64-yard score.

The Papermakers gained 260 yards on the 17 plays, averaging 15.3 yards per play. Dang.

Changed the lead:
I wrote a potential lead for my story at halftime, trying to have some fun at the the notion that it really just is not fair: Camas is too damn good to also get all the bounces! Of course, the Papermakers will take any bounce that goes their way.
But by the end of the game, after my interviews, I did not want anyone to read my lead and think that Camas got lucky Friday night. It was 55-6! The Papermakers certainly were not lucky.
(I did use some of that original lead later in my story.)
That crazy football can take some heart-breaking bounces some nights. Other nights, the thing goes right to you.
Camas received the opening kickoff, promptly put the ball on the ground. The first Camas player to jump on the ball did not control it, and the ball squirted forward. Then the ball got kicked sideway. The Eagles missed two chances to recover, and the Papermakers got the ball and got a decent return, too.
Of course, if you’ve been on Twitter, you’ve seen the Camas touchdown when Michael Matthews fell on a fumble in the end zone. Drake Owen lost the ball at the 20-yard line. Not only did his teammate recover it, but the ball bounced all the way into the end zone first. That’s fortunate.
“The ball bounced right to me, too,” Matthews said as he got to the end zone first in the wild scramble for the ball.
The Papermakers fumbled the ball again on their first drive of the second half. Graham-Kapowsin appeared to have a shot at the turnover. Nope. Offensive lineman JT Tumanuvao recovered it for Camas, and the Papermakers would go on to score, making it 41-6.

Weird end of the first half:
I was stunned by how the first half ended. Again, we were all figuring for a close game between two state contenders. Instead, it was 34-6 Camas. Yeah, it looked bad for Graham-Kapowsin, but if G-K is really good enough to compete for state, one would think the Eagles could have done something, change things around, hope for a major comeback.
The Eagles got to midfield with about a minute to go in the half. They threw the ball downfield once. Incomplete. Then they came back with two dive plays up the middle for a gain of four yards and a gain of four yards. They had timeouts left. They showed no hustle. They just let the clock hit zero.
Now get this: The Eagles also got the ball first in the second half.
So if the Eagles had scored just before the half, and then scored on their first possession of the second half, well, then it would have been a game again.
Instead, the team trailing by four touchdowns, the team that averaged more than 50 points per game, kind of gave a knee with 50 seconds to play from midfield. No, not a literal knee. The Eagles did gain yards. But they certainly were in no hurry to go anywhere except the locker room.
So, and I ask this with all due respect and not in a negative way toward G-K but a positive for the Papermakers: Is Camas just so good that a quality opponent had no hope … with a minute to go in the first half?

Credit the guys who do not start:
Six different Papermakers scored touchdowns. So many guys had big tackles, big plays on defense. Yet Marshall McIvor said credit should go to the second- and third-string players. They are the ones who prepared the starters all week in what all the Papermakers said was the best week of practice all season.
“We got ready,” McIvor said. “The scout team is the best. Our second team is just as good as any team in our league.”

Turning heads:
The Papermakers know that score will be noted by the rest of the teams still in the playoffs. That’s OK. They want to be known as the best. They want to prove it, too.
“We’re really good,” Jack Colletto said. “And I think what really explains it is this team in January. Everybody was lifting. Everybody was trying to get better. We all had one goal, and it started at the end of last season.”
Matthews agreed.
“I think we’re really good. We have all the talent. Great special teams unit. Solid offense. Solid defense. And our line is incredible this year, both sides of the ball,” Matthews said.

Kicker in a groove:
We wrote about Michael Boyle last week, and he had another strong night in Week 11.
Graham-Kapowsin had nine possessions on Friday night. Here is where the Eagles started each possession:
20-yard line.
20-yard line.
20-yard line.
20-yard line.
20-yard line.
20-yard line.
20-yard line.
20-yard line.
20-yard line.
That’s eight kickoffs after the touchdowns and one kickoff after halftime.
Yes, nine kickoffs, and nine touchbacks.

Camas will travel to play at Skyline in the state quarterfinals at 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 19. Skyline beat Camas last year in the same round.


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