A rare JV note because, well, because it was amazing; plus notes on Union, Camas, Skyview, and Battle Ground
Here are the weekly football notes from the 4A GSHL.
HERITAGE TIMBERWOLVES (2-0)
Week 2: Heritage 8, Hudson’s Bay 0
Not exactly a perfect game for the Timberwolves, but they still have a perfect record.
“Our defense played great, and our offense didn’t,” coach Dennis Moody said. “We managed to get by on it. For us, we’ll take any wins we can get. They are going to be tough to come by, so we’ll take it.”
Heritage had trouble with turnovers for the second week in a row.
Moody said he was impressed with the defense, which kept playing hard and giving the offense an opportunity to do something positive. He pointed out the play of linebackers Skyler Scoggins and Andrew Gray, along with defensive back Anthony Kee, who had two interceptions.
“A shutout is a shutout. These guys were flying to the ball,” Moody said.
The offense did get one scoring drive going, and running back Isaac Roa cashed in for the Timberwolves with a touchdown run.
Next: Heritage hosts Kelso in the second game at McKenzie Stadium, around 7 p.m. Friday.
“We’re approaching it as a good test for us to see where we’re at, as far as how hard we’ve worked,” Moody said. “It’s going to be a challenge, but we’re very excited to play this game.”
UNION TITANS (2-0)
Week 2: Union 41, Steilacoom 13
It was worth the wait for the Union Titans, who endured a lightning delay almost two hours to complete their game against Steilacoom.
Never say never:
We never write about junior varsity or freshmen games. Well, almost never.
I’ll make an exception here for two reasons: An incredible finish and it was the first football game on the new turf at Union High School.
It happened Monday night. The Titans were trailing by six, and Steilacoom had the ball with about 90 seconds left.
That’s when Rory Rosenbach, Union’s varsity head coach, decided to head home. He got a report, via phone, as all of this was happening.
The Titans defense forced a punt after Union used all of its timeouts to get the ball back in time to try for a comeback.
Evan Eschels, a sophomore, “made an incredible one-handed touchdown catch,” according to Rosenbach’s report. The extra point gave Union a one-point lead with 28 seconds left in the game.
Congrats on the win, right?
Steilacoom scored with 6 seconds left to retake the lead.
Oh, but after a squib kick that did not go far, Union had one last chance from around midfield.
Quarterback Troy Helenihi got away from the pocket, tried to buy time for his receivers to get downfield, but didn’t feel right about any of his options. So he took off. And he made it to the end zone for the winning quarterback scramble.
Three lead changes in the final 30 seconds, and Union got the win — as Rosenbach was driving home.
“Had I stayed, I would have screwed it up somehow,” Rosenbach said.
This is the type of game that proves it does not have to be varsity to be a memory of a lifetime.
Back to the varsity game. The weather delay came with Union up 13-0 and in the red zone. Darn right, the Titans wanted to complete the game. And after 90 or so minutes, play resumed.
Before the delay, there was one real cool play that I noticed in the highlights.
Union had a 13-0 lead, but Steilacoom was driving. One of those moments when the whole game could change right here. A touchdown by Steilacoom makes it a game again. A turnover would keep Union in command.
The Titans got the turnover.
A lot of Titans showed great hustle on this play, and two stood out.
First, linebacker Logan Wilson ran down the receiver, made the tackle, and popped the ball out of his hands. Wilson’s momentum carried him out of bounds, where he rolled over and got back on his feet immediately.
By that time, his teammate, Tyler Summers, had scooped up the ball and was heading the other way. Instead of just celebrating his tackle and forced fumble, Wilson took off and tried to catch up to Summers, tried to find a way to make a block some 50 yards downfield. Pretty cool.
Oh, and Summers? The Titans started that play with two deep safeties. Summers was on the other side of where the ball carrier was headed. Summers pursued the play, and after Wilson forced the fumble, he was right there at the 3-yard line to pick it up and return it 58 yards.
Next: Union travels to face Eastlake at 7 p.m. Friday.
CAMAS PAPERMAKERS (2-0)
Week 2: Camas 70, Hazen 7
Running clock for the entire second half, and the Papermakers still got to 70. An incredible display by everyone. The offensive line play is as good as hyped before the season. A focused group right now, on a mission.
What a start:
OK, not going to write too much more on a 70-7 game, but here’s a shoutout to Jackson Preston.
On the first play from scrimmage, the linebacker got a sack. Hazen tried a bootleg, and at first glance, it appeared that maybe Preston was not going to contain the QB. Oh, but Preston’s speed made up for it, he pulled the QB down, and Camas was on its way.
That set up a three-and-out. Hazen punted.
Tyler Forner would get the 41-yard punt return for a touchdown, and it was Preston who made the key block to spring him toward the end zone.
The Camas defense forced another three-and-out. Forner was one guy away from returning that one for a score, too. No big deal. Camas scored two plays later.
Next: Camas will host West Valley of Yakima at Doc Harris Stadium on Friday.
SKYVIEW STORM (2-0)
Week 2: Skyview 52, Columbia River 0
That’s six wins in a row for Skyview over its neighborhood rival, and three shutouts in the last four meetings.
The Storm started their first five possessions inside the Columbia River 40-yard line, including two in the red zone.
The Storm got four first-quarter touchdowns, then added a fifth touchdown just two plays into the second quarter.
Don’t mind the Storm:
The Storm are probably loving the start to this season. They are in the same league with the defending Class 4A state champions and the 2016 4A state champions.
Union, with a new lineup, is off to a 2-0 start as well, and after last years’ 14-0 campaign, the Titans are getting a lot of attention state-wide.
Camas, the 2016 champs, are 2-0 and have what one opposing coach described as a college offensive line. The Papermakers are high up there in the rankings, too. One statewide site has Camas No. 1
Skyview? Oh, the Storm are getting plenty of respect, too. They are ranked. But they are ranked below Camas and Union.
Fine by them in September. The Storm just want to keep improving, keep winning, and keep the spotlight away from them … until it really matters.
Next: The Storm travel to Mount Si for a 7 p.m. Friday game.
BATTLE GROUND TIGERS (1-1)
Week 2: Battle Ground 26, Burlington-Edison 21
The Tigers with the nice bounce back after they struggled in Week 1.
Special teams play:
The Battle Ground punt team had an interesting day. Started off bad, but it ended with a great play. A perfect example of learning from the mistakes of the past to perform well later.
Burlington-Edison got a safety to start the scoring when an errant snap went out of the end zone.
However, in the fourth quarter, with the Tigers clinging to a five-point lead, the punt team did its thing.
Mason Wann (who also had a strong day on defense for the Tigers) pinned Burlington-Edison on its 4-yard line with a coffin corner punt with less than two minutes to play.
Burlington-Edison would go about 80 yards before losing a fumble. So having to go 96 to win the game was a real burden for B-E.
Instead, it was a BG victory.
Battle Ground was part of our weekly sports update, with video highlights from Week 2. See it here:
Next: Battle Ground hosts Mountain View at 7 p.m. Friday