Week six of the high school football season in Washington has arrived. Here are some of the top games to watch this for Olympia area teams.
No. 2 Onalaska (5-0) at Rainier (4-1)
7 p.m. Friday at Rainier High School
If not for a one-point Week 2 road loss to Toledo by Rainier, this would be a battle of unbeatens.
Onalaska won last year’s Pacific 2B Mountain Division game, 34-28, in its second consecutive home meeting with the Mountaineers, who won handily in 2017, 30-12, on the Loggers’ field.
This time, Rainier gets Onalaska at home to start a telling second half of its season. For the past three seasons, the Mountaineers started 5-0 with only one playoff bid to show for it, primarily because of second-half injury attrition. Following this season’s strong start with a successful finish would be a feather in the cap of new coach Andy Bartell and his team.
Last week, Rainier shut out 3A Fort Vancouver, a school undergoing an extreme rebuild under head coach Neil Lomax, a former NFL quarterback, 41-0. Brody Klein, the Mountaineers’ leading rusher with a gaudy 13.4 yards per carry average on the season, scored three touchdowns against the Trappers while junior quarterback Mike Green threw a touchdown pass to Riffe Holmes.
Green has completed 67.2 percent of his passes for 718 yards and eight touchdowns with Klein, Holmes and freshman Jacob Uch his top targets. Green, Uch, Holmes and Kyle Peterson have all been effective running the ball.
In Onalaska’s 72-0 rout of Morton-White Pass last week, Ashton Haight rushed for three touchdowns and 128 yards. Dillon Dublin backed him up with 84 yards on seven carries as the Loggers passed the ball only twice, picking up 387 yards on the ground.
Aberdeen (2-3) at No. 1 Tumwater (5-0)
7 p.m. Friday at Tumwater District Stadium
After a perfect 4-0 non-league season against all 3A or 4A-level teams, top-ranked 2A Tumwater rolled to an expected 64-6 home thrashing of Rochester in its 2A Evergreen Conference opener.
The Thunderbirds stay home this week to host the Bobcats, in the middle of a promising rebuild but cautious enough they forfeited a scheduled non-league game against 3A Kelso two weeks ago out of concern for the safety of their players against what Aberdeen coach Todd Bridge described in a statement as an extremely physical Hilanders’ team.
They’ll play the league game against Tumwater but likely won’t find the going much easier despite a successful start to EvCo play last week – a 46-30 beating of Centralia at Stewart Field. Tumwater won last year’s game with Aberdeen, 61-3
Dylan Paine rushed for three touchdowns against the Warriors while Turner Allen scored on a punt return and a touchdown pass from Cody Whalen. Hunter Baker, who scored once, led a swarm of 14 T-Birds who carried the ball at least once, with 59 yards.
The Bobcats, meanwhile, had a huge rushing night against Centralia, totaling 375 yards. Ethan Morrill led the way with 181 yards on 30 carries while Connar Sherman added 81 yards on 10 carries as Aberdeen passed the ball only seven times.
No. 8 Puyallup (4-1) at Olympia (2-3)
7 p.m. Friday at Ingersoll Stadium
Life in the 4A South Puget Sound League isn’t easy.
After having a two-game win streak snapped by the state’s fifth-ranked 4A school, Graham-Kapowsin, on the road last week, the Bears return home to face No. 8 Puyallup, fresh off a dramatic victory over No. 7 Union, 42-41.
The Vikings broke a 35-35 tie only to see the Titans score a late touchdown of their own but fail on a two-point conversion attempt.
Against Union, Puyallup’s Isaiah Dickerson rushed for 86 yards and two touchdowns on 16 carries while Kyler Johnson added 80 yards and two TDs on 18 carries. He also threw what turned out to be the game-winning touchdown to Joseph Dwyer.
Last season, Puyallup beat the Bears, 48-0.