Evergreen still alive for a Class 3A playoff berth

EvergreenPlainsmen can reach the postseason with a win over Mountain View or victory in tiebreaker

Evergreen Plainsmen (4-4, 2-2 3A GSHL)

Week 1: Evergreen 26, Columbia River 13

Week 2: Heritage 34, Evergreen 7

Week 3: Evergreen 12, Hudson’s Bay 7

Week 4: Evergreen 9, Black Hills 6

Week 5: Prairie 28, Evergreen 23

Week 6: Evergreen 56, Fort Vancouver 13

Week 7: Union 49, Evergreen 6
Week 8: Kelso 14, Evergreen 7

Next: vs. Mountain View, 7:30 p.m. Friday at McKenzie Stadium

Evergreen put on a clinic on defense against Kelso but could not get the offense going in a tough loss. Now it’s on to rival Mountain View. A win guarantees at least a tiebreaker for second place. The Plainsmen can still make the playoffs with a loss and some help.

Jerontae Burns (5), shown here in a game against Heritage earlier this season, and his Evergreen teammates will face district-rival Mountain View Friday at McKenzie Stadium. Photo by Mike Schultz
Jerontae Burns (5), shown here in a game against Heritage earlier this season, and his Evergreen teammates will face district-rival Mountain View Friday at McKenzie Stadium. Photo by Mike Schultz

Tough loss but also inspiring play:

The Evergreen defense scored the team’s lone touchdown and kept the Plainsmen in the game against a team that had scored 42-plus points in three of its last four games, plus 23 against first-place Mountain View.

Kelso’s drives against Evergreen:

  1. Gained 19 yards, then punted.
  2. Gained 27 yards, got to the 20-yard line (Kelso started inside Evergreen territory), but then lost the ball on downs.
  3. Gained 16 yards, then threw the pick-six. Evergreen’s David Crawford with the 44-yard interception return for touchdown. (By the way, the Evergreen offense punted on fourth-and-1 from midfield just before this series. Often, in high school ball, teams go for it there. The Evergreen coaches knew their defense was playing well, punted, and the defense rewarded that decision.)
  4. Gained 27 yards then lost a fumble.
  5. Good drive for Kelso. Bad snap cost Kelso 15 yards. Then Serge Rusnak got a sack on third down, leading to a punt.
  6. First drive of the third quarter, Kelso went 91 yards for a touchdown. The only long scoring drive of the game.
  7. Kelso goes three-and-out, punt. A penalty on special teams gave Kelso a first down. Then Evergreen intercepted a pass in the end zone.
  8. Kelso starts at Evergreen’s 34-yard line and goes on to score.
  9. Kelso, trying to kill the clock with a 14-7 lead, goes three-and-out and punts instead.

Playoff scenarios:

Mountain View has clinched the top seed from the 3A GSHL.

Kelso has clinched at least a tie for second place and, at the very least, will be in a tiebreaker if three teams tie for second place.

Hudson’s Bay, Evergreen, and Prairie are all alive.

Here are the scenarios:

Mountain View has already clinched the top seed.

Then …

  1. If Hudson’s Bay beats Kelso and Mountain View beats Evergreen, Bay is No. 2 and Kelso is No. 3
  2. If Hudson’s Bay beats Kelso and Evergreen beats Mountain View, there would be a three-way tie for second place with Bay, Evergreen and Kelso.
  3. If Kelso beats Hudson’s Bay and Evergreen beats Mountain View, Kelso is No. 2 and Evergreen is No. 3
  4. If Kelso beats Hudson’s Bay and Mountain View beats Evergreen and Prairie beats Fort Vancouver, Kelso is No. 2, and there is a three-way tie for third place between Bay, Evergreen, and Prairie.

That last scenario is what happened last year. Evergreen, Hudson’s Bay, and Prairie got together for a three-team tiebreaker on the Monday after Week 9. That could happen again this year. Last year, Evergreen survived that tiebreaker to advance to Week 10.

Coach Speak:

What did Terry Hyde think of his team’s Week 8 performance? “This team just keeps fighting. They are a resilient group and thrive on being challenged. Very proud of their effort in this game.”

MVP on offense: Jacob Tillman, tight end. An injury forced him into a starting role, then he played a solid game blocking and receiving, his coach said.

MVP on defense: David Crawford. Had the interception return for touchdown, but also had 16 tackles, including seven unassisted.

Thoughts on Week 9 vs. Mountain View: “This is another great opportunity to compete and put ourselves in position for postseason play,” Hyde said.

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About The Author

Paul Valencia joins ClarkCountyToday.com after more than two decades of newspaper experience. He became the face of high school sports coverage in Clark County during his 17 years at The Columbian. Before moving to Vancouver, Paul worked at Oregon daily newspapers in Pendleton, Roseburg, and Salem. A graduate of David Douglas High School in Portland, Paul enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving three years as a soldier/journalist. He and his wife Jenny recently celebrated their 20th anniversary. They have a son who has a passion for karate and Minecraft. Paul’s hobbies include: Watching the Raiders play football, reading about the Raiders playing football, and waiting to watch and read about the Raiders playing football.

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