Week six provided some interesting moments for high school football teams in the Olympia area, but primarily served to set up make or break games for a trio of surging local squads in week seven.
TUMWATER AND W.F. WEST COVET TITLE
Tumwater and W.F. West have each displayed versatile and productive offenses in racing out to 6-0 records.
Friday night was no exception as W.F. West overwhelmed host Rochester, 70-13; Tumwater blasted visiting Aberdeen, 54-8.
The teams will meet Friday night in Chehalis in a game that will almost certainly decide the 2A Evergreen Conference championship.
The difference between this season’s Tumwater squad and most that came before is variety on offense. In the past, the T-Birds much-feared wing-T offensive system was usually enough to guarantee success. This year, with senior Cody Whalen at quarterback, Tumwater is mixing it up more.
Against Aberdeen (2-4), the T-Birds immediately showed off the versatility of their ground game as four different players including Jacob Schuster, usually a lineman, Jaylen Clay, Dylan Paine and Turner Allen scored first quarter rushing touchdowns.
But Tumwater showed its versatility on its next two scores, long touchdown passes from Whalen: 74 yards to tight end Austin Terry and 36 yards to Danny Goodburn.
Clay, whose rushing TD came from 55 yards, then added another big play with a 65-yard punt return for a score. Andrew Lowe capped the scoring with a 14-yard run.
Meanwhile, W.F. West kept its usual versatility under wraps against the Warriors (1-5), sticking to the ground to pile up as many points as it has in any game going back to at least 2003.
Quarterback Josiah Johnson, who did complete three passes for 69 yards and a touchdown to Leandre Grimes, ran five times and erupted for 142 yards and four touchdowns. Jaiyden Camoza, who opened the scoring with a 45-yard punt return for a touchdown, ran for another as did Gavin Fugate.
Trent Peters, with a 30-yard fumble return, and Aaron Fuller, with a 40-yard interception return, scored defensive touchdowns.
W.F. West had scored all its points before Rochester got on the board via Landon Hawes touchdown passes to Daillin Schlect and Bodey Smith.
In other games involving local 2A schools, River Ridge snapped a two-game losing streak with a 42-25 road upset of Fife and Centralia beat Black Hills, 25-22, at Tiger Stadium.
YELM SETS UP SHOWDOWN AT PENINSULA
Yelm’s offense has been hitting on all cylinders throughout the 3A South Sound Conference season and this week was no exception as the Tornados posted a 57-0 rout of North Thurston.
The win sets up a battle of league unbeatens next Friday at Roy Anderson Field when Yelm travels to co-leader Peninsula – both 4-0 in league after losing pairs of non-league games to tough opposition.
Yelm lost to 4A Skyview and Tumwater while Peninsula lost to 3A’s second-ranked team, O’Dea, and Skyline. The tough competition clearly prepared them for league play as neither has faced much resistance in the 3A SSC.
Quarterback Ben Hoffman had a huge night for the Tornados against the Rams, completing 10 of 16 passes for 146 yards and three touchdowns to go with a rushing score. Running back Carson Amendt had another strong game, gaining 94 yards on nine carries and scoring three touchdowns.
Anthony Chipres scored twice, on a 10-yard pass from Hoffmann and a 50-yard run. Chipres carried just four times for a total of 93 yards. Sylas Franklin caught the other two touchdown passes, for scores of 15 and 13 yards.
Sean Rohwedder was all over the field defensively with 11 tackles and four assists.
Meanwhile, Peninsula rolled up 352 yards of total offense to down Central Kitsap, 27-7, on the road to stay perfect in league.
In other games involving local 3A teams, Timberline blasted visiting Shelton, 55-14, and Capital fell to Gig Harbor, 38-14.
RUNAWAY TRAIN INTERRUPTS RAINIER’S MOMENTUM
Ashton Haight, a guy his teammates call “The Haight Train,” rushed for 349 yards and four touchdowns on 35 carries as 2B’s second-ranked school, Onalaska, emphatically snapped host Rainier’s three-game win streak, 54-22.
The Loggers (6-0) totaled 482 yards as they passed only twice. Defensively, they halted any semblance of a Rainier running game as Mountaineer rushers gained only two yards.
Rainier (4-2) got a nice passing night from junior quarterback Mike Green, who completed 16 of 28 passes for 193 yards including touchdowns to Brody Klein and Jake Jeske. Green also rushed for a touchdown and accounted for a pair of two-point conversions, one rushing, one a pass to Logan Bowers.
DEPTH MAKES THE DIFFERENCE AT TOP OF 4A SPSL
Olympia has done well against some 4A South Puget Sound League foes, beating Rogers and Bellarmine Prep handily this season. When it comes to the ranked schools at the top of the standings, though, the Bears aren’t quite as deep.
That facet of the game was evident during Olympia’s 45-14 loss to visiting Puyallup, sixth-ranked in the Associated Press 4A poll and coming off a thrilling one-point victory over defending state champion Union six days before.
The Bears had their moments as Nathan Hermann completed 14 of 28 passes for 244 yards and a pair of touchdowns to his favorite target, Will Anderson.
For Puyallup, three of the seven running backs the Vikings used scored touchdowns. On its final possession, Puyallup handed the ball to 5-foot-6 sophomore running back Ziere Ford 12 times during a 16-play, 99-yard drive after Olympia downed a 47-yard Ben Krasnokutsky punt just short of the end zone.
That made Ford the game’s leading rusher though he hadn’t carried once before that drive.
Six-foot-five junior quarterback Luke Holcomb completed 26 of 36 passes for 326 yards including 35-yard touchdowns to Angel Sanchez and Jordan Dwyer, two of the seven Vikings to receive at least one pass.
ELMA FALLS TO HOQUIAM
Elma had high hopes coming into its 1A Evergreen Conference opener with Hoquiam. The Eagles had just shown their offensive firepower in a 62-7 rout of 2A R.A. Long.
But the Grizzlies defense proved a bit too tough for Elma (3-3) as it held an offense quarterbacked by sophomore Rene Duran because of an injury to starter and star Cody Vollan to only a single second quarter touchdown.
Elma scored on a three-yard run by Brady Shriver.
The Eagles opponent next week, Tenino, played Saturday night at home against Forks. In another game involving a local small school, Northwest Christian lost to Coupeville on the Blacktop in Tenino, 32-24.