Hawks fulfilling role as favorites in Class 2A Greater St. Helens League
Hockinson Hawks (4-0, 2-0 2A GSHL)
Week 1: Hockinson 42, La Center 6
Week 2: Hockinson 42, Prairie 6
Week 3: Hockinson 49, Woodland 27
Week 4: Hockinson 42, Ridgefield 15
Next: Mark Morris at Hockinson, 7 p.m. Friday
The Hawks have moved up to No. 3 in The Associated Press state rankings for Class 2A.
The pass sets up the run:
The Hawks did have some strong rushing totals in this one. Colton Wheeler cracked the 100-yard mark, in fact. But the air assault happened first.
That was not the plan. Just happened that way.
The Hawks lost a fumble on their first offensive play of the game, a running play.
So when they got the ball back, it was time to let it fly.
One play. Touchdown. A 55-yard bomb from Canon Racanelli to Sawyer Racanelli.
Defensive brothers, too:
The Racanelli brothers don’t just team up for touchdowns. They also team up for interceptions.
Sawyer Racanelli ran unblocked toward the Ridgefield quarterback in the second quarter. The QB saw him coming and rushed his throw, just as he was getting hit. Canon Racanelli spotted the ball in the air first and came down with the interception.
That led to a touchdown and a 14-7 lead for the Hawks.
That was quick:
It was a 7-7 game after the first quarter. Ridgefield had some success moving the ball, too.
But after that interception that led to the Hockinson touchdown for a 14-7 lead, the Hawks got more defensive.
Joe Brennan got into the Ridgefield backfield for a tackle-for-loss, stalling the next drive. Ridgefield then struggled on special team. The ball got away from the punter, and he put his knee down while trying to retrieve the ball.
The next play, a short touchdown pass from Canon to Sawyer.
From 7-7 to 21-7 in a heartbeat late in the second quarter. Hockinson was on its way.
The Hawks also got the ball first to open the second half. They drove the field for another touchdown. Yes, the Racanellis again.
This one, a 31-yard pass, featured (from my angle on my computer screen) superb coverage by the Ridgefield defensive back. However, a great pass and great catch can beat superb coverage. That made it 28-7, and the Hawks knew they were going to win their fourth consecutive game.
What did Rick Steele learn about his team in Week 4? “We keep moving forward. We show improvement each week, and that is what we are striving for. Very balanced this week offensively.”
MVP on offense: “Colton Wheeler. Ran the ball very well Friday night,’’ Steele said. “Offensive line opened some holes for him, and he ran tough. Our first 100-yard running back in two years.”
MVP on defense: “Defensive line as a whole,’’ Steele said. “Take away the long touchdown run, and (the Spudders) had very little success on the ground. We pressured the quarterback all night.”
Thoughts on Week 5 vs. Mark Morris: “Continue to work both sides of the ball for improvement,’’ Steele said. “No let-downs. Continue to play at a high level. Mark Morris is hungry for a win, and they played Washougal tough. We have to come out ready to go.”