Peninsula knocks out Thunder from state football playoffs
The pass was knocked away in the end zone.
Final play of the game.
Just like that, it was over for the Mountain View Thunder.
“Getting to the playoffs is big, but sometimes it has an abrupt ending,” Mountain View coach Adam Mathieson said. “That’s the hard part. It’s so final.”
The Peninsula Seahawks got a blocked field goal in the fourth quarter, then defended the end zone for the final three passes of the game to escape McKenzie Stadium with a 10-7 victory over Mountain View in a Class 3A state football playoff.
Peninsula will host Rainier Beach in the quarterfinals.
Mountain View’s season came to that abrupt end that the coach described. The 2017 Thunder — Team 37 in the program’s history — finished 8-3 overall with a Class 3A Greater St. Helens League championship.
But just like last year, this team finished in the round of 16 at state, losing to Peninsula for a second consecutive season in Week 11.
“It’s mean everything to me,” senior Zeek Fromel said of representing his school on the football field. “It’s been my entire life for four years. I love every one of these guys on the field.”
He also credited the Seahawks.
“Their players made plays. We didn’t always make the plays,” Fromel said. “We gave it our all. We gave it 100 percent every play, as a team.”
Peninsula just had a few more of the big plays go its way.
Michael Foreman caught a 22-yard touchdown pass from Burke Griffin with 9:25 to play in the game, giving the Seahawks a 10-7 lead.
Mountain View responded with a 12-play drive to get into field goal range. Quarterback Glen Perry Jr. had 61 of his 117 rushing yards on that possession.
Foreman, though, got through the line to block the field goal with less than three minutes to play.
This defensive battle had two more defensive stands. First, the Thunder did its job, getting the ball back to its offense, with the Thunder starting at the 50-yard line with 1:09 to play and no timeouts.
Then it was Peninsula’s time to shine on defense. Mountain View made it to the 26-yard line, but the Seahawks knocked down the final three passes in the end zone.
“Every year, we’re trying to be better and better and better,” Foreman said. “Last year’s guys really pushed it on us to give it our best. The coaches really put it on us to believe in each other.”
Foreman said that was his first blocked field goal.
“We had to finish the game,” he said.
On the other side of a celebration is heartache. Mathieson struggled to come up with the right words. He said he loved coaching this team and wanted another week, at least. He also was surprised at the Thunder’s overall performance.
“We just didn’t play well. Three trips to the red zone and got nothing,” he said.
The Thunder also had some uncharacteristic penalties. Not just the typical holding or procedure calls, but unsportsmanlike.
The biggest came on Peninsula’s drive after Mountain View had taken a 7-3 lead. The Thunder defense stopped the Seahawks short of a first down on a third-down play, but then were flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct.
“We said something (wrong),” Mathieson explained of the penalty.
The Seahawks took advantage and scored the go-ahead touchdown on that drive.
“That was a good high school football game,” Mathieson said. “I just wish I was able to push a different button to get them to play better.”
The game was scoreless at halftime.
Peninsula got on the board on its first possession of the third quarter when Ben Stanford was true on a 30-yard field goal.
Mountain View took the lead when Perry found Makai Anderson for a 72-yard bomb on the first play of the fourth quarter.
From there, Peninsula did its thing, getting past Mountain View to reach the quarterfinals again.
Mathieson said Team 37 was a “great group,” and while many will be back for Team 38, this was the last time this particular squad would be together on the field.
“You hope you coach them in a way that gives them a positive experience,” he said of the seniors. “We’ll miss them.
“It’s hard. You say your goodbyes,” the coach added. “A lot of investment by a lot of kids for a lot of years.”
PENINSULA 10, MOUNTAIN VIEW 7
Peninsula 0 0 3 7 — 10
Mtn. View 0 0 0 7 — 7
P – Ben Stanford 30 FG
MV – Makai Anderson 72 pass from Glen Perry Jr (Aiden Hargrove kick)
P – Michael Foreman 22 pass from Burke Griffin (Stanford kick)
RUSHING: Peninsula: Braedon Potter 9-37, Foreman 10-12, Cameron McDonald 1-5, Griffin 7-50, Sean Skladany 1-1. Mountain View: Nile Jones 8-41, Perry 23-117, Jack Mertens 4-14, Tyrell Hall 1-(minus 2), Michael Urruchua 2-17.
PASSING: Peninsula: Griffin 13-20-0-153. Mountain View: Perry 6-15-0-122, Garrett Moen 1-2-0-13.
RECEIVING: Peninsula: Foreman 3-37, Potter 4-37, Jace Keim 3-48, Alex Beloate 3-31. Mountain View: Mitchell Delmage 2-39, Michael Bolds 1-3, Mertens 1-2, Anderson 2-78, Hall 1-13.