TUMWATER — Statistics in sports can be deceiving, but in the Tumwater football team’s case, it didn’t matter that it trailed Aberdeen in almost every statistical category at halftime during Saturday night’s 2A District IV playoff game.
The Thunderbirds had a 35-point lead.
The top-ranked T-Birds might have only run 15 first-half plays, yet they cruised to a 42-12 win over the Bobcats at Tumwater District Stadium to earn the program’s fourth consecutive Class 2A state playoff berth.
Tumwater (10-0) will host Sehome of Bellingham, which started the season 1-4, in next week’s first-round state playoff game. Despite being undefeated, Tumwater is District IV’s No. 2 seed, meaning its game against Sehome is the final home game of 2013. Should it win, its quarterfinal matchup will be on the road.
“Next week is going to be awesome — to play our last game here,” T-Birds quarterback Jayden Croft said. “It’s going to be bittersweet. We love playing here.”
Aberdeen ran more than double the amount of plays in the first half (34 to 15), yet Tumwater led 35-0 at halftime, thanks to big-yardage plays.
The Thunderbirds went up 14-0 with Nick Foerstel’s 52-yard interception return and Christian Cummings’ 61-yard touchdown run.
It was a big night for Tumwater’s defense, intercepting Aberdeen three times and running two back for touchdowns — on Foerstel’s return and Gabe Gleizes’ 13-yard touchdown, which pushed Tumwater’s lead to 42-0 halfway through the third quarter.
Those two touchdowns helped the defense set a school record for points scored in a season (66), topping last year’s mark of 64 points through 13 games.
Cummings finished with touchdowns of 61, 26 and 12 yards for a game-high 141 yards on seven carries.
Aberdeen scored in the fourth quarter on a 5-yard run by Drew Stocker and a 17-yard touchdown catch by Lorenzo Ontiveros as the final horn sounded.Meg Wochnick: 360-754-5473 email@example.com theolympian.com/ south-sound-sports-blog @megwochnick