Hawks turn battle of unbeatens into a rout, defeating the Panthers 41-7
WASHOUGAL — Hockinson coach Rick Steele knew everyone at Washougal High School had a party planned for Friday night.
So, the Hawks’ coach told his players there was only one thing for them to do.
“We heard all week how big of a thing they were making of this, and they should be proud of how they’re playing this year,’’ said Steele, paying respect to Washougal’s improving football program. “But, it’s one of those things. If they’re going to have a big party, then they really don’t want us here but we are here, so sometimes you just have to wreck the party and be party poopers.’’
That’s exactly what Hockinson was in this battle of undefeated teams playing on Homecoming night at the Panthers’ Fishback Stadium. The Hawks soared to a 34-0 halftime lead and cruised to a 41-7 victory that improved their season record to 6-0, including a perfect 4-0 in Class 2A Greater St. Helens League games.
Canon Racanelli, the Hawks’ standout quarterback, completed 25 of his 29 pass attempts for 337 yards and four touchdowns. The senior also scored on a touchdown run.
“We knew it was a big game,’’ Racanelli said. “We knew we just had to do our thing. Our O-line blocked great and our D-line played great. We played great all-around. Everyone made big plays.’’
Most of those big plays came in the first half as Hockinson’s dominance forced a running clock for most of the second half.
Racanelli amassed 223 yards passing in the first half, completing 17 of his 20 passes in the first two quarters. Two of his scoring strikes were to brother Sawyer Racanelli, who was on the receiving end of a 49-yard bomb and a 20-yarder that he pulled down in the right corner of the end zone, over-the-shoulder style.
“Offensively, we just did our stuff,’’ Canon Racanelli said of the first half explosion. “We took what the defense gave us. We did a great job of whatever they did wrong, we took advantage of.’’
Colton Wheeler got the party started for Hockinson, bullying his way into the end zone on a 4-yard run. Racanelli added his 1-yard rushing touchdown later in the first quarter and the Hawks were on top 14-0 heading into the second quarter.
Sandwiched in between the two spectacular Racanelli-to-Racanelli second-quarter scores was a 19-yard touchdown pass from Canon Racanelli to senior tight end Kyle Brabec.
Racanelli capped Hockinson’s scoring in the third quarter with a 6-yard touchdown pass to sophomore Peyton Brammer. That score came with 8:51 remaining in the third quarter and put Hockinson up 41-0, which started the running clock, limiting the number of plays for both teams in the rest of the game.
Washougal got on the scoreboard late in the third quarter when Ryan Stevens found Jakob Davis on a 30-yard pass play.
Hockinson’s stingy defense was as spectacular in the first half as the Hawks’ prolific offense. Hockinson held Stevens to 4-for-10 passing for 38 yards in the first two quarters and the Hawks intercepted the Panthers’ senior twice. On the ground, Washougal managed just 24 yards rushing on 14 carries in the first half.
“Everybody talks about our offense, and our offense is good, but I think we’re playing pretty darn good defense,’’ Steele said. “We’re so much better defensively this year than we were last year. We want to get back to where we were a couple of years ago. We’re getting better each week defensively so people got to start talking about our defense too.’’
Washougal fell to 5-1 on the season. The Panthers, 3-1 in league play, are still in the driver’s seat for one of the GSHL’s playoff berths.
Hockinson has been no stranger to the top spot in the Class 2A GSHL standings in recent years and the Hawks have had success in the state playoffs as well. That recent experience appeared to be a big factor in Friday’s clash of previously unbeaten teams.
“We’ve played in big games over the last few years and a lot of these kids have been there for that,’’ Steele said. “Washougal is having a great year but it has taken them a few years to get here so this is the biggest game they’ve played in a long time. So, we had a little advantage because we’ve been in big games before.’’
Hockinson 41, Washougal 7
Hockinson 14 20 7 0 — 41
Washougal 0 0 7 0 — 7
Hock — Colton Wheeler, 4-yard run. (Nick Charles kick)
Hock — Canon Racanelli, 1-yard run. (Charles kick)
Hock — Canon Racanelli, 49-yard pass to Sawyer Racanelli. (Charles kick)
Hock — Canon Racanelli, 19-yard pass to Kyle Brabec. (Charles kick)
Hock — Canon Racanelli, 20-yard pass to Sawyer Racanelli. (Kick blocked)
Hock — Canon Racanelli, 6-yard pass to Peyton Brammer. (Charles kick)
Wash — Ryan Stevens, 30-yard pass to Jakob Davis. (Stevens kick)
RUSHING: Hockinson: Colton Wheeler 7-42, Canon Racanelli 10-24, Jonathon Domingos 4-15, Levi Crum 1-5, Kyle Nute 1-2. Washougal: Kade Coons 13-57, Ryan Stevens 3-(-22), Nathan Tofell 4-10.
PASSING: Hockinson: Canon Racanelli 25-29-0-337. Washougal: Ryan Stevens 9-17-2-97, Kade Coons 0-1-0-0.
RECEIVING: Hockinson: Sawyer Racanelli 6-105, Matt Henry 2-10, Jake Beslanowitch 3-19, Peyton Brammer 5-71, Colton Wheeler 1-16, Matt Henry 2-40, Wyatt Jones 1-12, Kyle Brabec 1-19, Nicholas Frichtl 1-9, Aidan Mallory 2-22, Blake Sparks 1-6. Washougal: Kade Coons 1-3, Grant Lewis 5-51, Jakob Davis 3-43.
This week’s scores
|Mountain View||29||Kelso||23, OT|
|Columbia River||19||Woodland||13, OT|
|Castle Rock||55||King’s Way Christian||14|
|White Salmon||48||Seton Catholic||7|9