Timberline High School football coach Nick Mullen said this to his players in the huddle after the game, and they echoed it later — this was a statement win.
Clutching an undefeated record, the seventh-ranked Blazers rode to Purdy, and thumped Peninsula, 51-14, to claim their second consecutive Class 3A South Sound Conference title.
“I expected this kind of effort,” Mullen said. “Our kids our dialed in.”
Timberline has showed flashes of brilliance throughout the season, but Friday night at Roy Anderson Field showed just how dominant this Blazers team can be.
“All throughout practice, we were working hard,” junior Jamin Faalogo said. “Our scout team was giving us a good look. We just came in ready.
“Last year, it was tough. We knew they were going to try to come back and get payback. We were just ready to play all four quarters.”
Last season, Timberline needed a goal-line stand late in the fourth quarter to lift them to a 7-3 win over the Seahawks in Lacey.
This was quite the opposite.
Timberline scored seven touchdowns — five set up by Peninsula turnovers — and racked up 318 yards of offense on its way to securing the league’s top seed into next week’s district playoffs.
“Our defense is huge,” senior Michael Barnes said. “We’ve seen that the past two years, how much of an impact it can make.
“Especially with those turnovers, the short field makes it a lot easier on the offense.”
All but two of Timberline’s scoring drives started in Seahawks territory.
Faalogo punched in the first Blazers touchdown from 4 yards out with four minutes, 54 seconds remaining in the first quarter, and Timberline never trailed.
He scored another 2-yard touchdown in the second, and recorded an interception and a fumble recovery that set up two more scores.
“I was just ready to play,” Faalogo said. “I wasn’t going to slack off no matter what. I didn’t want to take any breaks.”
Timberline scored on five consecutive drives in the second quarter, capped by a 28-yard field goal by senior Tolby Selvester, to take a 37-0 lead into the break.
“When we’re firing on all cylinders like we were tonight, that shows what we can do,” Barnes said.
Faalogo (6-foot-2, 220 pounds) and senior Mason Simeta (6-3, 225) both lined up in the backfield on several plays.
Simeta also found the end zone twice, both times from 1 yard out.
“They’re monsters, they’re beasts,” Mullen said. “The (offensive) line played amazing. When the o-line plays like that, we just impose our will on teams.”
The Blazers churned up 251 rushing yards, and all of their touchdowns came on the ground.
Junior quarterback Hunter Campau scored on keepers from 1 and 2 yards, finishing with 20 yards on 12 carries. He was 4 of 6 passing for 67 yards.
Barnes led all rushers, and pushed his season total to 1,026 yards, carrying 16 times for 127 yards and one touchdown.
His 12-yard score with 2:16 remaining in the third capped Timberline’s scoring.
“I was just trusting my guys like I have all season, followed them, and bounced it out as soon as I had the opportunity to find green,” Barnes said.
Peninsula scored two late touchdowns, on Alex Beloate’s 87-yard kickoff return in the third, and a 26-yard pass from Burke Griffin to Braeden Potter in the fourth, but couldn’t muster much offense.
“They’re the No. 1 defense in the state for a reason,” Peninsula coach Ross Filkins said. “But, we were able to run the ball effectively.
“In the passing game, we had a lot of stuff there that was left on the table. Really uncharacteristic of us. We’re extremely disappointed.”
The Seahawks combined for just 124 yards of offense (73 rushing, 51 passing).
Timberline (9-0) hosts Stadium (4-5), which finished fourth in the 3A Pierce County League, next week at South Sound Stadium.
“League championship, just rolling into the playoffs like that, it’s a lot of momentum,” Barnes said.
NO. 7 TIMBERLINE
T – Jamin Faalogo 4 run (Tolby Selvester kick)
T – Hunter Campau 1 run (Selvester kick)
T – Mason Simeta 1 run (kick failed)
T – Campau 2 run (Selvester kick)
T – Faalogo 2 run (Selvester kick)
T – Selvester 28 field goal
T – Simeta 1 run (Selvester kick)
T – Michael Barnes 12 run (Selvester kick)
P – Alex Beloate 87 kickoff return (Ben Stanford kick)
P – Braeden Potter 26 pass from Burke Griffin (Stanford kick)