4A GSHL Football notes: Camas punter one of best in nation

Bryce Leighton to be celebrated by Under Armor; plus tidbits on all team from the league.

Here are the weekly football notes featuring the Class 4A Greater St. Helens League.

CAMAS PAPERMAKERS (4-0)

Week 4: Camas 24, Bellevue 7

All-American:
Pretty cool thing happening later this week at Camas. The school will be honoring punter Bryce Leighton, who has been selected to play in the Under Armour All-America Game in Orlando, Fla.

Camas punter Bryce Leighton shares a few minutes with youngsters earlier this season. Leighton is one of the best punters in the nation. Photo by Kris Cavin
Camas punter Bryce Leighton shares a few minutes with youngsters earlier this season. Leighton is one of the best punters in the nation. Photo by Kris Cavin

The game features 100 of the best senior high school football players in the country. Leighton is ranked as the No. 2 punter in the nation, according to Kohl’s kicking rankings. 

There is a pep assembly Friday in preparation for Camas’ home game against Heritage that night. Leighton will be recognized in front of the student body.

The Under Armour All-America Game is scheduled for Jan. 2 and will air on ESPN2. 

Leighton is also the kicker for Camas. He gets plenty more opportunities to kick for Camas than punt. That’s just life of being a punter on a team that rarely needs to punt.

Bryce Leighton will be recognized in front of the student body Friday for his selection to the Under Armor All-American Game. The game, which brings some of the best high school football players in the nation together, will be played in January in Orlando, Fla. Photo by Kris Cavin
Bryce Leighton will be recognized in front of the student body Friday for his selection to the Under Armor All-American Game. The game, which brings some of the best high school football players in the nation together, will be played in January in Orlando, Fla. Photo by Kris Cavin

Coach Jon Eagle earns weekly honor:

The Seattle Seahawks and UnitedHealthcare announced Tuesday that Camas coach Jon EAgle was named one of the Seahawks’ Week Four NFL High School Coaches of the Week for the state of Washington, according to Seahawks.com.

“Under the leadership of Coach Eagle, the Camas Papermakers have been a perennial state contender and a dominant team in the 4A class,’’ the Seahawks announced. “The Papermakers always play with tremendous character, discipline and sportsmanship. Coach Eagle has been a long-time active member of the Washington State Football Coaches Association.’’

More revenge:
A year ago, Camas stood 2-2 after four weeks. 

This year, the Papermakers have avenged two of those losses. In Week 1, they beat Lincoln. This past week, it was mighty Bellevue.

The victory was so impressive that Bellevue’s coach told the Seattle Times that Camas is the best team in the state. 

“Their kids were so disciplined. They don’t budge,” Bellevue coach Michael Kneip told The Times. “The margin for error against a team like that that’s so well coached is so small.”

From the beginning:
Camas needed all of 11 seconds to take the lead. 

Tyler Forner returned the opening kickoff 85 yards and the Papermakers were on their way. Forner in the open field this year has been nearly automatic. He has been touchdown machine.

But for these notes, I also wanted to point out the really good blocks on that opening kickoff.

Logan Silva, Sebastian Harb, Mark Harimoto, and Conner Murphy sealed off their opponents, creating space for Forner. 

Then downfield, Charlie Bump got the final block, springing Forner.

Also found it interesting to see Forner point toward the end zone around the 30-yard line. Then he realized he probably should keep sprinting, so it was just a quick point, and then he was off to the races again.

Next: Camas opens league play with a home game against Heritage at 7 p.m. Friday at Doc Harris Stadium.

HERITAGE TIMBERWOLVES (2-2)

Week 4: Mountain View 24, Heritage 7

Improvement:
Heritage coach Dennis Moody was shaking hands with the Thunder coaching staff when one of his own players came up to him to thank him.

The player just wanted his coach to know that he was appreciated as the Timberwolves went 2-2 in the first month of the season. 

Technically that’s the same record as last season. However, this year, the Timberwolves just feel like they are in a better spot.

Friday against Mountain View, it was 7-all at halftime.

It was still 14-7 until Heritage turned the ball over, giving the Thunder great field position, which led to a touchdown.

“We’re not about moral victories, but our guys are competing every week,” Moody said. “They’re giving their best effort. It’s disheartening to lose, but I don’t know if I could be prouder of a group, for everything they have given us.

“What more can you ask of the kids if they are giving you everything they have? I like the direction we are heading, for sure.”

Standouts:
The defense played great, the coach said. Skyler Scoggins had another strong night. Moody also noted the play of Cade Gardner and Zephen Zabik. Anthony Kee and Kaleb Le Mere each had interceptions. 

Next: Heritage hits the road to face Camas at Doc Harris Stadium at 7 p.m. Friday in the 4A GSHL opener.

“I can’t believe there are teams better than them in the state. It’s going to be a chore,” Moody said. “We’re going to go out and compete. Whatever happens, happens.” 

Skyview Storm, High School Football, Vancouver, Clark County, 4A GSHL, Yaro Duvalko, Ahmani Williams, Jalynnee McGee, Mason Wheeler, Jack Nitschke, Cooper Barnum

SKYVIEW STORM (3-1)

Week 4: Skyview 55, Rogers of Puyallup 21

Highlights:
Hope you got a chance to see our video we posted on Monday, which had a few highlights from Skyview.

When I’m checking out video, whether on HUDL or on any clips I take, I like to look beyond just who has the ball. I caught a gem on Friday night on Skyview’s first touchdown. 

Ahmani Williams caught a pass from Yaru Duvalko and scored a touchdown. 

Unfortunately for me, the play’s direction went to the other sideline, far from me.

Fortunately for me, my camera caught Micah Baylous waving at Williams. Yes, waving at him – as Williams was still running with the ball toward the end zone. Baylous knew it was going to be a touchdown, and Baylous wanted to make sure Williams saw him, so they could meet up for the celebration.

Just a fun moment you don’t see every day on the football field.

Later, I saw Jalynnee McGee with a great downfield block. As the team’s top running back — he has 11 touchdowns in four weeks — he is used to having the ball. But on this play, it was a pass to a receiver, and there was McGee, 30, 40 yards downfield making a block. 

Love that hustle. 

Next: Skyview hosts Battle Ground in a 4A GSHL game at 7 p.m. Friday at Kiggins Bowl.

BATTLE GROUND TIGERS (1-3)

Week 4: Prairie 38, Battle Ground 6

One of those weeks:
A year ago in the rivalry, a lot of people expected Prairie to roll past Battle Ground. Instead, Battle Ground dominated that game.

This year, well, it was Prairie’s turn.

However, this score says more about Prairie than it does Battle Ground. Seriously, Prairie just might be that good this year. Tip your cap to the Falcons and move on to Week 5.

Touchdown Tigers:
Yes, the game was out of reach when Battle Ground got on the board, but ask any coach, the reps matter. When a team puts together a drive, even on the wrong side of a blowout, it matters. Today and in the future. 

The Tigers played for pride and did not get shut out in the rivalry game.

Ryan Potes carried five times for 34 yards on Battle Ground’s scoring drive, including a 25-yard run to get into the red zone.

He would get the touchdown, too, on a 6-yard run. Key blocks on that play came from Joe Smith and Mason Wann. 

Next: Battle Ground will head to Kiggins Bowl to face Skyview at 7 p.m. Friday in a 4A GSHL opener.

UNION TITANS (3-1)

Week 4: Union 21, Chiawana 20

Big bounceback:
The Titans had won 16 in a row before losing in Week 3.

Nobody really knew how they would respond. After all, they aren’t used to losing.

“You hope you’re going to rise to the occasion after a loss like that,” Union coach Rory Rosenbach said. “They did a good job competing … We made one more play than they did.”

Quarterback CJ Jordan was unable to play due to injury, so Alex Gehrman got the start and performed admirably. 

That was not a surprise to Rosenbach. The coach has been making sure Gehrman has played at least a series in every game “so he can get the jitters out.”

When it was time for him to start, he was ready because he has been on the field this year preparing for his time to shine.

Chiawana put in some run plays that the Titans were not ready for, but the Titans made quick adjustments. Rocky Mataia and Tumua Sosene rotated in at noseguard and both ruled the line of scrimmage to slow down Chiawana, Rosenbach said.

Tyler Summers and Daron Ulrich also had their usual tremendous performances on defense. 

And another star from Week 4 was Maliki Campbell. The defensive back struggled in Week 3, and it was clear that Chiawana wanted to test him this week.

“He was all over it,”  Rosenbach said.

Next: One more non-league game for the Titans. Oh, and it’s a big one. Union is traveling to take on Puyallup at 7 p.m. Saturday. A year ago, Union rallied from 14 points down to beat Puyallup — twice! Once in the regular season and once in the playoffs.

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Andi Schwartz is a Graphic Designer with 19 years of experience ranging from a variety of print design projects, including newspaper layout and ad design, business collateral, screen printing and embroidery digitizing, label printing and web design.

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