Here is a breakdown of every local playing in the first round of the high school football state playoffs this week.
3A STATE PLAYOFFS
NO. 5 KAMIAKIN (9-1) AT NO. 7 TIMBERLINE (10-0)
5 p.m. Saturday, South Sound Stadium, Lacey
About the Braves: How far can the defending 3A champions go? They have a lot of seniors from the squad that toppled O’Dea for last season’s state title. QB Payton Flynn (161 of 316, 2,158 yards, 23 TDs) flashes a big arm, and will throw downfield to WR Champ Grayson (56 receptions, 900 yards, nine TDs), an Eastern Washington commit. Front seven sacked Lakes eight times last week.
About the Blazers: After crushing Peninsula (51-14) to win the 3A South Sound Conference title, and Stadium (56-20) in the district round, the Blazers have never played better entering the state playoffs. RB Michael Barnes (175 carries, 1,103 yards, 10 TDs) leads a balanced attack, but it is Timberline’s ability to match Kamakin’s physicality up front that should be the difference.
Olympian pick: Timberline, 27-24.
2A STATE PLAYOFFS
RIVER RIDGE (6-3) AT NO. 1 ARCHBISHOP MURPHY (9-1)
7 p.m. Friday, Goddard Stadium, Everett
About the Hawks: Not so young anymore, a talented group of underclassmen have River Ridge in the state playoffs for the fourth straight year. QB Tomasi Manu (45 of 82, 663 yards; 36 carries, 363 yards; 17 total TDs) threatens in all phases, and lifted the Hawks to a thrilling win over White River in the district round. Manu’s big-play ability could be the difference against a Wildcats team allowing less than two touchdowns per game.
About the Wildcats: Archbishop Murphy won an undefeated state title last season, hasn’t dropped a game in the 2A classification since its semifinal loss to Tumwater in 2015, and is favored to win it all again this year. RB Ray Pimentel (172 carries, 1,695 yards, 23 TDs) has scored 138 points for the Wildcats alone, and four-star recruit Kyler Gordon (1,294 all-purpose yards, 16 total TDs) is a constant danger anywhere on the field.
Olympian pick: Archbishop Murphy, 42-21.
BLACK HILLS (6-4) AT NO. 7 SELAH (8-0)
5 p.m. Friday, Zaepfel Stadium, Yakima
About the Wolves: Black Hills pulled off another miracle win at Columbia River last week. DB Kade Weitzel recorded his third interception of the season, which eventually led to a touchdown, to keep the Wolves alive in the fourth quarter. Weitzel, who has proved the program’s biggest game-changer, scored his second game-winning touchdown of the season with 28 seconds to play. Black Hills has won five games in the final seconds this season.
About the Vikings: Selah is in the state playoffs for the ninth time in program history, and the first time since 2009, but has only advanced out of the first round once — back in 1983. The Vikings are averaging 47 points per game, and hosting a Black Hills offense that has yet to put up more than 26. In a high-scoring game, the Vikings could well be on their way to the quarterfinals.
Olympian pick: Selah, 30-14.
LYNDEN (5-5) AT NO. 2 TUMWATER (8-2)
7 p.m. Friday, Tumwater District Stadium, Tumwater
About the Lions: Don’t let the record deceive you — Lynden has been and still is a powerhouse football program. The Lions have advanced to the state playoffs 11 of the past 12 years, and have won six of their eight state titles during that span. Lynden rallied from consecutive losses with a 28-7 win over Sedro-Woolley in the district round, and nearly upset 3A state contender Ferndale back in September.
About the T-Birds: Tumwater has scored a classification-best 450 points through last week’s district playoffs, during which the T-Birds shut out Washougal, 55-0. Sophomore Dylan Paine (186 carries, 1,216 yards, 23 TDs) paces a talented group of Tumwater wingbacks, which have combined for 3,277 rushing yards this season. Tumwater hasn’t given up more than seven points in a single game in five weeks.
Olympian pick: Tumwater, 35-24.
W.F. WEST (8-2) AT NO. 5 NORTH KITSAP (9-0)
7 p.m. Friday, North Kitsap High School, Poulsbo
About the Bearcats: Cory Davis kicked a 26-yard field goal after time expired to lift W.F. West past Woodland, 38-35, in the district round. But it was QB Nole Wollan (77 of 152, 1,011 yards; 118 carries, 665 yards; 19 total TDs) who put the Bearcats in position. His 279 rushing yards and four total touchdowns against the Beavers have the Bearcats in the state playoffs for the fifth consecutive season.
About the Vikings: RB Dax Solis leads North Kitsap’s run-based offense, and scored five touchdowns in a district-playoff win over visiting Eatonville. Solis’ 367 rushing yards against the Cruisers brought his season total to 1,606 — which broke program record set in 1948. The Vikings have won the 2A Olympic League title four of the past five seasons, only to be upended by defending champion Archbishop Murphy in the state playoffs the past two years.
Olympian pick: North Kitsap, 21-7.
2B STATE PLAYOFFS
NO. 9 RAINIER (7-2) AT NO. 3 NAPAVINE (9-1)
7 p.m. Friday, Tiger Stadium, Centralia
About the Mountaineers: Following a blowout win (47-7) over Wahkiakum last week, coach Terry Shaw says the Mountaineers are playing confident, inspired football. QB Zach Lofgren scored five touchdowns, and recorded 283 all-purpose yards to send Rainier to the state playoffs for the first time in 26 years. The last two times the Mountaineers advanced to the state playoffs (1990, 1991) they lost in the title game.
About the Tigers: The defending state champions shut out Rainier in the first meeting between the two programs this season, 22-0, and held the Mountaineers to just nine yards of offense. Napavine’s only loss this season was to top-ranked Kalama (14-8) back in Week 2. The Tigers have advanced to the title game the past three years, winning their third title in program history over Liberty of Spangle last December.
Olympian pick: Napavine, 24-14.
Staff writer Todd Milles contributed to this report.