In week 4 of the SPSL 4A football season the teams began to sort themselves out and we’re down to 2 undefeated teams, one 3-1 team then a log jam of three 2-2 teams and 4 teams with 1 or less wins. Some teams are likely surprised where they are and thought they would be in a different position.
The battle of undefeateds is going to be decided in 2 weeks when Graham-Kapowsin visits Curtis. Both teams will have what some may call “trap” games and those teams who are opponents will likely use that next week as motivation to try and pull the upset.
Below are all the results from week 4 with stories on games we covered and links to other coverage we could find. Let’s get to week 4!
Curtis 50, Emerald Ridge 34
Coming into the game Curtis Head Coach Darren McKay thought that neither team was going to be able to shut down the other’s offense and with a total of 84 points scored he was dead-on. He was also dead-on when he thought it would be the defense one way or the other that determines the outcome. McKay says it’s gonna come down to a few stops. Who can get a critical stop and he thought it may be as simple as blocking an extra point.
Once again, Coach McKay nailed it. Emerald Ridge had the 1st possession and began on their own 31. 11 plays later they are faced with a 4th and goal from the 1 and lined up to go for it but a false start pushed them back to the 6. Giving up a field goal would be considered a win for the Vikings but the Jaguars decided to go for it and handed it off to Navarre Dixon who looked like he might get in but would be pulled down just shy of the endzone on the 1 to deny E-R the points.
Curtis took over but was forced to punt and the Jags got great field position right on the 50. They drove to the 11 and faced a 4th and 2 but again Curtis’s defense held firm again handing the ball over to the offense on their own 10. So 3 drives in and 8 seconds into the 2nd quarter the game was still scoreless, surprisingly.
But the next drive opened the flood gates. Curtis drove 90 yards in abut 3 and half minutes capped off with a 22 yard run by QB Rocco Koch. Koch is the holder on the PAT and bobbled the low snap but scooped it up and ran it in for 2 to take an 8-0 lead.
E-R would not flinch and put together their 3rd straight impressive drive but this time would finish it. Despite Navarre Dixon carving up the Curtis defense running the rock, the Jags would play-action and QB Jake Schakel hit Tony Harste with a low laser for 6 and the two would pair up again to tie the game at 8-8 with 3:31 to go in the half.
Little did we know the halftime score would be far different than the 8-8 tie with just 3 and half minutes left to play in the half. Curtis would get the ball back on their own 24 and it took just 3 plays and 35-seconds for the Vikings to re-take the lead. In 2 plays they were on their own 47 when Koch dropped back and hit Parker Mady who was gone scoring the 53-yard strike. Ethan Bell comes on to kick the PAT and it was 15-8 with 2:49 to go. 15-seconds later it was 15-14 when Isaac Syph took the kick-off from his own 4 yard line right up the middle of the field, juked one last defender near mid-field and took it to the house for a huge answer. But the snap of the PAT was high and the extra point failed keeping it 15-14 with 2:34 still to play.
Curtis would get the ball on their own 20 and then march 80 yards in 10 plays finishing it off with a Koch to Mady TD pass from the 3-yard line with just 16-seconds left to play. The PAT was good and Curtis went to the half up 22-14 and would be getting the ball 1st in the 2nd half.
The Vikings began to create some space with an impressive opening 2nd half drive going 6 plays with 4 rushing and 2 passing with Koch finishing it off on an 8-yard TD score. The PAT was good and now a 15-point lead 29-14. E-R came right back with a 4-minute 6-play drive with Dixon blasting into the endzone from the 7-yard line. But another big play by the Curtis defense blocking the PAT to keep the game a 2-score affair at 29-20.
The Jaguars then had a huge opportunity to close the gap when they picked off a pass as Curtis was approaching another potential score. Tony Harste picked off the Koch pass on the E-R 9-yard line. They would approach mid-field and faced a 3rd and long where Schakel dropped back to pass and fired it over the middle but big Greg Keown for the Vikings gets his big mitt on the ball and knocked it down at the line of scrimmage to force a 4th and long.
The Jags punted it away to Parker Mady and he took it on his own 24 and headed up the field. Just 7 yards into the return Kane Able delivered a thundering blow taking out 2 Jag defenders with 1 hit springing Mady to the outside, he would then crossed the 50 down the near sideline and then cut back in toward the middle of the field and looked like he was going to get pulled down when he spun out at about the 37-yard line of E-R and headed back to the sideline and was gone into the endzone for an incredible runback for 6. The PAT was added and Curtis pushed their lead to 36-20.
This ended up being the crushing blow to the Jaguars as they would never get it back to a 1 score game. Curtis added to their lead after another E-R punt when Koch found Mataio Wilson for a 38-yard TD toss and the PAT was good to go up 43-20. The final Curtis TD was Koch running it in from the 39 yard line with the extra point pushed their total 50. E-R did score again in between the final 2 Viking scores when Jake Schakel took it in from the 14 and then ran in the 2 point conversion.
The two teams combined for 946 yards of total offense according to our ESN stats that are not official and add in the 96 yard kick-off return for E-R and the 76 yard punt return for Curtis and the total yardage adds up to 1,118.
For Curtis Koch finished with 220 rushing yards and 3 TD while going 14/18 for 3 TD and an interception and total of 263 yards. Mady led the receivers with 9 catches for 152 yards and 2 TDs, Xavier Ahrens hauled in 3 catches for 40 yards and Wilson caught 2 for 71 and a score.
Emerald Ridge was led by running back Navarre Dixon who ran the ball 25 times for 167 yards and a TD while Schakel ran it 8 times for 61 yards and a score. Schakel was 17 of 28 for 182 yards through the air with 2 TD’s. Tony Harste led the receivers with 9 catches for 112 yards and 2 TD’s a 2 point conversion and picked off a pass on defense.
Our MVP of the game went to Parker Mady with a huge night in all 3 phases of the game. Others considered of course Rocco Koch but also the offensive line as a unit and Kane Able who made multiple big plays on defense and threw that devastating block on the big Mady punt return.
Link to watch the full game (On the NFHS Network and is by subscription.) Emerald Ridge at Curtis game stream
ESN talks with game MVP Parker Mady
ESN talks with Curtis’ Kane Able
ESN talks with Curtis Head Coach Darren McKay
Rocco Koch hits Parker Mady on a 53-yard strike
Emerald Ridge strikes back with a 96-yard
Curtis strikes a big blow with huge Punt return
(Thursday Night) Graham-Kapowsin 35, Bellarmine Prep 0
The Eagles remained undefeated with a big win over Bellarmine Prep. The Eagles were led by Daveon Superales who threw for more than 300 yards and 3 TD’s. Receiver Jabez Woods hauled in 15 catches for more than 170 yards and a TD. Running back Alele Fa’apito-Leao added a score blasting in from the 2-yard line. Defensively, Samu Palaita had an interception.
The Eagles are now 4-0 and will travel to Sumner next Thursday and then will go to Curtis for the big showdown the following Friday.
(Thursday Night) Sumner 35, Puyallup 30
The Sumner Spartans jumped out to a 35-10 lead in the 2nd half but a spunky Puyallup squad would not give in and made a dramatic late run that came down to the Spartans having to recover an on-side kick to secure the win.
Sumner took control with a 21-7 halftime lead and built that advantage scoring first on a 15-yard TD strike from Tristan Rebar to freshman Praylon Pope, Austin Ferentz hit the PAT for a 7-0 score.
Puyallup struck back a couple of possessions later when freshman QB Brayden Paulino hit Kyson Douglas on a 56-yard catch and run, Luke Faccone hit the PAT for a 7-7 tie. The Spartans would answer with another TD toss from Rebar this time to TE Carter Cocke` for a 22-yard score to make it 14-7. Sumner would force a punt and get in one more time with just 43-seconds to play when Rebar snuck in from the 1 for the 21-7 halftime lead.
Just before halftime the Spartans suffered a serious blow losing Matthew Spurbeck to an apparent knee injury. Spurbeck is a workhorse running the ball and playing on defense. It was reported later that Spurbeck is lost for the season.
Sumner looked like they were in total control when in the 3rd quarter Cooper Miller picked off a pass and took it to the house for a 28-7 lead. Puyallup answered with a 33 yard field goal from Faccone to make it 28-10. That was then answered with another Spartan TD with Steele Isaacs plowing in from the 2 to make it a 25-point game.
The Vikings knew they had nothing to lose at this point and let Paulino fire the ball down the field. Paulino found Douglas for the 2nd time who took it 68-yards for the TD to make it 35-17. Puyallup got the ball back and scored again with a 45-yard strike to Nick Neil. After holding the Spartans again Puyallup drove to the 3 and Paulino hit Neil again and tried for 2 to make it a 3 point game but missed and they trailed 35-30.
Puyallup would attempt the on-side kick with about 55-seconds to go in the game but the Spartans smothered the ball and were able to run the clock out for the win. Sumner improves to 2-2 while Puyallup drops to 1-3.
Our MVP of the game went to Sumner’s Steele Isaacs who ran for more than 100-yards and stepping in for Matthew Spurbeck after his injury was a huge plus for the Spartans in being able to build that lead and hold on for the win.
To watch the full game replay click on the link to the NFHS network. (This is a subscription stream.) Puyallup at Sumner game stream
ESN Post Game Show
Sumner’s Cooper Miller with a pick 6
Puyallup makes it a 1 score game late
Olympia 41, South Kitsap 21
Olympia got their first win of the season knocking off South Kitsap. The Bears struck first when QB Cale Allen found Drew Carlson for a 22 yard strike with about 8 minutes to go in the 1st quarter. The PAT was good and Olympia was up 7-0. The Bears added to their lead when Allen ran the ball in from the 15 yard line but the PAT missed and it was 13-0.
South Kitsap would get in the game with their 1st score a 1 yard TD plunge with 3:00 to play in the half and trailed 13-7. The Wolves would take the lead just before halftime with 19-seconds to play when Boden Harvey caught a 6-year TD toss from QB Jorden Lee the PAT was good and went to the break with a 1-point lead.
The Bears wasted little time in answering on the 1st drive of the 2nd half Olympia marched down and punched it in from the 1 with Kaiden Fox running it in, the PAT was good and Olympia took the lead back 20-14 with 9:40 to go in the 3rd. The Bears on their next possession would extend their lead to 27-14 on a Drew Carlson 22 yard run they would add the point after and take a 27-14 lead.
The Bears would add another score early in the 4th quarter a 1 yard plunge from Allen after a big run by Fox to the 1 yard line on the final play of the 3rd quarter and Olympia was in control 34-14. Each team would add another score for the final but the Bears dominated the 2nd half for their first win of the season.
Olympia is now 1-3 as is South Kitsap. The Bears will travel to Bethel next while South Kitsap will try to rebound at Emerald Ridge.
Olympia Strikes first
South Kitsap takes the lead late in the 1st half
Bears Cale Allen seals the game with a scramble TD
Bethel 56, Rogers 14
Bethel rolled over the Rams with a huge effort to even their record at 2-2. The Bison may just surprise some teams as they continue to play hard and are in each of their games. Bethel will take on Olympia next for a chance to get back to a winning record. The Bears are coming off their 1st win of the season.
Rogers remains winless and will take on cross town rival Puyallup next.