Tyler Yarber bounced the play outside and galloped untouched 53 yards to the end zone.
His encore, less then two minutes later, was even more spectacular as the Rochester senior outdid himself on the Warriors’ next offensive play, racing 89 yards for his third score of the first half.
The theme of the night was simple for Rochester: In Tyler we trust.
Yarber rushed for 235 yards and four touchdowns, teammate Tyler Gedney ran for two scores and threw for another, and the Warriors opened 1A Southwest Washington Evergreen Division play by defeating visiting Rainier, 49-21, on Friday night.
“I just came in ready to run tonight,” Yarber said. “I was hyped. We had a big crowd. It was a fun night.”
Yarber, who also scored on runs of 21 and 22 yards, chalked up 201 yards on 14 carries in the first half, helping Rochester (2-1 overall, 1-0 league) build a 42-7 lead two minutes into the third quarter.
“The offensive line was opening up huge holes for me,” Yarber said. “Running behind them and my fullback (Luke Eastman) makes it easy for me. Luke’s like a freight train out there.”
It marks Yarber’s second 200-yard game this season. He rushed for 229 yards on 25 carriers during Rochester’s 34-0 victory over Ridgefield two weeks ago.
Gedney threw for 140 yards on 9-for-10 passing, hitting Bobby Brien on a 6-yard scoring strike in the first half.
Gedney finished with three touchdowns with his final coming in bizarre fashion.
The senior quarterback was the holder on Eastman’s 18-yard field-goal attempt late in the third quarter.
The attempt was blocked, but failed to cross the line of scrimmage. Gedney secured the ball and raced into the end zone for an apparent touchdown.
An inadvertent whistle, however, nullified the TD so the teams’ replayed the down.
The exact same events unfolded on try No. 2, only this time there was no whistle, pushing Rochester’s lead to 49-7.
The Warriors scored 28 points in the final six minutes of the second quarter to take a commanding 35-7 lead into halftime.
“The kids just remained focused out there,” Rochester coach Eric Snelson said. “That’s what helped us turn the tide.”
Rochester turned two Rainier fumbles into touchdowns, scoring 25 seconds apart midway through the second quarter to begin the onslaught.
Gedney punched it in from 5 yards out to give the Warriors the lead for good at 13-7 with 5:53 to play in the first half.
The Mountaineers, who scored on their opening possession, were unable to answer, coughing up the football on their next play.