Hockinson continues its quest for Class 2A title with matchup against Pullman

Hawks to host Pullman at 2 p.m. Friday at District Stadium in Battle Ground

The Hockinson Hawks have earned a lot of recognition this season, and a lot of praise. The key word is earned. The Hawks are 10-0.

Playing the same non-league and league schedule as last year, the Hawks avenged their only two regular-season losses from 2016 with victories this season, including one in a rout. And the Hawks just dispatched Aberdeen in the Class 2A District 4 playoff to advance to state. A year ago, the Hawks’ season came to an end in Week 10.

The recognition has been earned. But the Hawks say they are not done yet. First round of state is just the first of what they hope are four state playoff games.

Hockinson quarterback Canon Racanelli (12) threw six touchdown passes in the Hawks’ win over Aberdeen last week. The senior signal caller will lead his team into the first round of the state playoffs this week against Pullman. Photo by Mike Schultz
Hockinson quarterback Canon Racanelli (12) threw six touchdown passes in the Hawks’ win over Aberdeen last week. The senior signal caller will lead his team into the first round of the state playoffs this week against Pullman. Photo by Mike Schultz

Next:

Pullman vs. Hockinson, 2 p.m. Friday at Battle Ground’s District Stadium.

Yes, 2 p.m. … Friday.

Weird time, especially for a Friday, but Pullman is a long way away and my guess is Pullman wanted to get an earlier start on the road home.

Travel plans are one thing, so let’s get to the actual football.

“Pullman looks to me that they want to run the football,” Hockinson coach Rick Steele said. “They use a myriad of backs. They put in three different quarterbacks, too. Sometimes they will be in a spread formation but they like to run the football. They tell you what’s coming. We just have to stop it. We’re going to have our hands full.”

Week 10:

Jake Beslanovich caught three of Canon Racanelli’s six touchdown passes as the Hawks rolled to a 49-8 victory over Aberdeen. Sawyer Racanelli caught two TD passes from his older brother and tallied 182 yards receiving.

That Canon guy, all he did was complete 18 of 20 passes for 307 yards. A 90-percent completion rate in a 300-yard game? Nobody does that. Well, nobody other than Canon Racanelli!

Motivating factors:

The Hawks have been so good this season that coaches have to remind players about the importance of keeping their focus.

“Sometimes we get up two touchdowns and shutdown,” Steele acknowledged, adding that he had to get on the Hawks at halftime of the Week 10 game.

The coach does not anticipate having any more related issues the rest of this season.

“A lot of these kids who have started for us as seniors were starting for us as sophomores the last time we got to the quarterfinals,” Steele said. “They have a taste of it. They also know there is a whole different level of football beyond the 2A GSHL. I don’t think we’re going to have a problem getting our kids fired up this week.”

It is, after all, win or go home.

“Everybody we play from here on out is a pretty darn good football team,” Steele said. “I think the kids are going to come out and be ready to go. We have to take our game to another level.”

Predications:

Our friends at Cascadia Preps have released their predictions for the final four. Two humans plus the computer from the ScoreCzar have made their final four picks.

Two of the three believe Hockinson will make the semifinals for the first time in school history.

You can find the predictions at www.cascadiapreps.com.

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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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