Papermakers stun Skyview with go-ahead score in final seconds
A crazy comeback?
A crazy curse?
Guess it depends on one’s point of view.
The Camas Papermakers will be celebrating all weekend, rallying from 19 points down in the fourth quarter to beat the Skyview Storm 36-33 on a touchdown with 7.6 seconds left in the game.
The Skyview Storm have to be wondering if they will ever get past their nemesis.
Friday’s result at Kiggins Bowl gives the Papermakers 12 consecutive wins over the Storm. That’s a dozen games between the two proud programs since Camas moved to Class 4A football. And that’s a dozen wins for the Papermakers.
There have been several close games, including a state quarterfinal game. Yet Camas always has found a way.
Then on Friday, this game wasn’t close. Well, until it was.
And, yep, Camas found a way.
Quarterback Taylor Ioane and the Camas offense rallied with three fourth-quarter touchdowns to win the 4A Greater St. Helens League opener.
Ioane found Konnor Limnell on a 4-yard touchdown pass on a fourth-down play with 7.6 seconds left in the game to cap the comeback for Camas.
Here are some observations and numbers for this Classic at Kiggins Bowl.
“When I threw it, in my head, ‘That might be a little too high,’” Ioane said. “I saw him put his hands up. ‘Alright, I have so much confidence he is catching this. When he came down with it, that was probably the most exciting thing I’ve ever seen.”
Ioane thought he might have put too much on the pass. His coach saw it another way. The pass had to be high, to get over the defense.
“Taylor made a wonderful throw. A perfect pass beats perfect coverage,” Jack Hathaway said.
Limnell said he wasn’t sure the ball was going to be coming to him once the play was called. But all receivers have to be ready, just in case.
Then, all of a sudden, the ball was in the air, on the way to cap an incredible comeback.
“I don’t know what was going through my head.,” Limnell said. “Just pure excitement.”
Grace under fire
The Papermakers got tackled in bounds at the 4-yard line on third down. The clock was ticking. There were close to 30 seconds left so nobody there was plenty of time to get set, find the play, snap the ball.
But it was the way that the Camas Papermakers stepped up to the line of scrimmage that was so impressive.
There. Was. No. Panic.
It was as if all of the Papermakers planned on being down five points with just seconds left and one play to score.
“Once we got on the ball after the third-down play, I looked at the clock. We had a lot of time left,” Ioane said. “We just kept our focus. We didn’t let our emotions get too high or too low.”
“It was awesome. We knew what was coming,” said receiver Trenton Swanson, who had nine catches for 171 yards and a touchdown. “They hadn’t seen that play before. We whipped it out of the back of the playbook and threw it in. It was money.”
From the sideline’s perspective, Hathaway knew the ticking clock did not mean too much. It was a matter of one play left.
“At that point, if the clock is running down and we snap it with 1 second, it’s fine,” Hathaway said. “So there really wasn’t much pressure on that. We called the play, and it’s up to the kids to execute it.”
The Papermakers did that with 7.6 seconds left on the clock.
Skyview scored on the first play of the fourth quarter when quarterback Jake Kennedy found Gavin Poffenroth on a 70-yard touchdown. That gave the Storm a 33-14 lead with 11:49 left to play in the game.
The Storm would not score again. The Papermakers would not be stopped again.
Camas went on a 12-play drive, converting on two fourth-down plays, including a 1-yard touchdown run from Reid Tennant to make it 33-21 with 6:28 left in the game.
The Papermakers then recovered an onside kick with the perfect bounce that would have made any NFL special teams coach proud.
Camas went 49 yards on seven plays, scoring on a 35-yard pass from Ioane to Nikko Speer.
That made it 33-28 with 4:03 left to play.
Camas opted not to go for the onside. Instead, a pooch kick that Skyview recovered on the 23-yard line.
The Camas defense, fresh from that long rest, was up to the challenge, stopping Skyview on three consecutive downs. The Storm punted, giving the Papermakers the ball back with 2:54 left in the game. Ten plays later, Camas had the lead.
“We never lost hope. We made some big plays,” Swanson said. “Came up clutch. Did what we’re supposed to do. Being part of something like this is amazing. We have a brotherhood you can’t find anywhere else. We believe in the guy next to us so much.”
Skyview builds its lead
Camas scored first in this game, needing just five plays on the first possession. The Storm would score the next 26 points, though.
Skyview needed just three plays to tie the game at 7 with Jake Kennedy scoring on a short run after Trey Jacob broke free for a 57-yard gain.
The Storm converted a 12-play drive and scored on another Kennedy run early in the second quarter.
In the closing seconds of the first half, Camas was a couple yards away from tying the game but Colby Warner picked off a Camas pass and returned it 99 yards for a 20-6 Skyview lead.
The Storm then scored on the first drive of the second half when Kennedy broke free on a 65-yard run.
Ioane would score on a short TD run for Camas to make it 26-14 late in the third quarter.
Skyview, though, got that TD to open the fourth for the 19-point lead again.
Classy comments from Camas coach
Jack Hathaway was gathering with his assistant coaches, when he noticed a Skyview player sitting on the 50-yard line, devastated from the result of this game.
“I feel bad for them,” Hathaway said of the Storm.
It was genuine.
This sport, with all the emotions associated with it, can do wonders. Hathaway can feel great about his team’s victory while feeling empathy for the other team.
“They’re kids. They play their tails off. Sometimes you feel it on all sides,” Hathaway said. “You look over there and you see a senior who has grinded and put in all the time. To lose a game that way, it’s tough. I’ve been there before. I’ve got tons of respect for their team and their program.”
This game was so good, I will watch it again over the weekend. Maybe even double-check the numbers. (I was on the broadcast for Vancouver Public Schools and was not taking stats.) But this is what a colleague has:
Taylor Ioane was 25 for 33 for 356 yards and three touchdown passes. He also rushed for a touchdown.
Trenton Swanson had nine catches for 171 yards and a touchdown. Limnell had five catches for 60 yards and the game-winning touchdown.
Reid Tennant rushed for 97 yards and a touchdown for the Papermakers.
Skyview’s Jake Kennedy was 10 for 14 for 154 yards and a TD pass, plus he rushed for 97 yards and three touchdowns. Trey Jacob rushed for 112 yards on 15 carries.
What it means
Camas is 4-3 overall, on a four-game winning streak. The Papermakers are 1-0 in the 4A GSHL and play Union next week. Union is 1-0 after its win over Battle Ground.
Skyview fell to 5-2 overall and 0-1 in league play.
As noted previously, this is the 12th consecutive win for Camas over Skyview. The Storm last beat Camas in 2011 when Skyview was the 4A GSHL champion and Camas was still in the 3A GSHL. Camas has still never lost to Skyview in the 4A GSHL.
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- High school baseball: La Center looks forward to promising futureLa Center’s baseball program had the best finish among Clark County teams this season, reaching the WIAA state quarterfinals, while Camas, Hudson’s Bay, and King’s Way Christian bowed out in the round of 16.