Heritage heads to Camas for matchup against league-leading Papermakers


Timberwolves’ season record at 3-3 after non-league win over Benson (Ore.)

Heritage Timberwolves (3-3, 0-1 4A GSHL)

Week 1: Heritage 28, Prairie 14

Week 2: Heritage 34, Evergreen 7

Week 3: West Valley (Yakima) 57, Heritage 16

Week 4: Redmond 38, Heritage 20

Week 5: Union 56, Heritage 6

Week 6: Heritage 34, Benson (Ore.) 14

Next: at Camas, 7 p.m. Thursday at Doc Harris Stadium

The Timberwolves, admittedly, had a tough time getting motivated for this one, taking on a team that is starting to build something but was not much of a threat to Heritage. Benson (Ore.) is a lot better than it was a year ago and gave Heritage some trouble, especially early. The Timberwolves were able to shake off the Techmen to end their three-game losing streak.

Heritage coach Matt Gracey (shown here) has his Timberwolves at 3-3 heading into Thursday’s game at Camas. Photo by Mike Schultz
Heritage coach Matt Gracey (shown here) has his Timberwolves at 3-3 heading into Thursday’s game at Camas. Photo by Mike Schultz

Defense to offense:

Heritage would score first, but only after the defense made a stop.

Robert Meadors and Andrew Thom combined for a tackle-for-loss in the first quarter, helping to stall a Benson drive.

Once Heritage got the ball, it only took two plays to score. The TD pass was combination of talents. Quarterback Michael Taras, running to his left, had to twist his body a bit to make the throw. And Neithan Stanley made a nice adjustment to the ball for a long touchdown.

Charles Woodson would be proud:

Ammon Garrison made an interception that reminded me of the great Charles Woodson. Garrison zeroed in on the ball, it was his only focus, he made his move, jumped for the ball, and even crashed into someone as he caught the ball.

Oh, that someone? It was his own teammate.

Yes, a Charles-Woodson, I’m-making-this-pick-no-matter-who-is-in-my-way play.

From close game to secure:

The Heritage defense got a safety in the second quarter to take a 9-7 lead. The offense would score right before the half for a 16-7 advantage. On that TD drive, Taras saw the blitz coming and used a perfect touch to float the ball over a defender’s hands into the arms of running back Kahai Umiamaka for a long gain. Those two would end up combining for the TD pass on the same drive.

Heritage got the ball to open the second half and needed just a few plays to score. Taras found Robert Meadors for a 43-yard touchdown pass. Pretty much game over at that point.

Coach Speak:

What did Matt Gracey think about his team in Week 6? “Especially after the month we had, we needed a win. Coming into this stretch of games, league-wise, it’s always nice to get something.”

MVP on offense: “Robbie Meadors. He had five catches for 116 yards and two touchdowns.”

MVP on defense: “Meadors again. He also picked off two passes. He was all over the field. He led us in tackles, as well.”

Thoughts on Week 7 vs. Camas: “It’s Camas. It’s 56 (as in Camas’ 56-game regular-season win streak). Some teams have geared up and done a lot in the offseason to try to beat them, and all they do is keep rolling. It seems like a monumental task. I would doubt, outside of our little room, there is anybody who thinks we can have some success against them.”

A year ago, Heritage was the only team to hold a halftime lead over the Papermakers.

“Just go out and see if we can make something positive happen,” Gracey said.

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