FOOTBALL: KW knocks off Tahoma; KR stops FW; Auburn drills K-M

  • BY Wire Service
  • Saturday, September 19, 2009 3:14am
  • Sports
Kentwood's Mikell Everette splits the Tahoma defense for a short gain during Friday night's game.

Kentwood's Mikell Everette splits the Tahoma defense for a short gain during Friday night's game.

Kentwood quarterback Tristan Askew felt the butterflies.

But it hardly showed Friday night at Maxwell Field, when the gritty senior engineered a late fourth-quarter drive that lifted the Conquerors past the Bears 21-14 in a South Puget Sound League football game.

Tied 14-14 with 3:34 left in regulation and momentum in Tahoma’s favor, Askew took a deep breath, relaxed and delivered a bolt over the middle to wide receiver Allain Songco for a 40-yard gain, giving Kentwood the ball on the Bears’ 17-yard line. Askew’s pass set the stage for Jared Fuller’s game-winning 6-yard touchdown run three plays later.

“I am not going to lie, I was nervous at that time,” said Askew, who alternated snaps the entire night with teammate Shane Green. “I took what I learned in practice … and I hit it on the knot.”

The big gain stole the momentum that Tahoma had held for nearly the entire final three quarters of play. The Bears (2-1 in SPSL North play) tied the game moments earlier on a 12-yard touchdown run by junior running back Niko Madison. At the time, the Bears appeared primed to make a full comeback from a game they had trailed early 14-0.

“It’s disappointing,” said Tahoma coach Tony Davis. “They just made a play, got a guy down the field and made a catch.”

And it could not have come at a better time for Kentwood, which struggled mightily on offense after an impressive first quarter. Kentwood (1-1 in league, 2-1 overall) marched over and through Tahoma during the opening quarter, collecting 131 yards and six first downs in the opening 12 minutes. Fuller put the Conquerors on top in the first quarter with touchdown runs of 17- and 11-yards.

The wheels then came off the Conk offense, which managed 87 total yards and three first downs in the final three quarters combined.

“For the most part, we managed the game despite some of our own hiccups, the guys pulled through,” said Kentwood coach Rex Norris. “I am really proud of them, they’ve had a tough three weeks.”

Kentwood was coming off a 35-28 loss to fourth-ranked Auburn, a game the Conquerors led late. In addition, the win helped the Conquerors end a four-year slide against the Bears. Kentwood hadn’t beaten Tahoma since 2004 (19-14). During the last four years, Kentwood has lost a total of seven SPSL North games, four of which came against the Bears.

“Any time you get over the hump on a team that’s had your number, that’s always a good feeling,” Norris noted.

Tahoma regained possession with 2:23 to play and had a chance to tie the game once again, but was turned back by the Kentwood defense on consecutive sacks by Quiijan Lawson and Tyler Sapp.

Trailing 14-0 after the first quarter, Tahoma’s Riley Owens cut the deficit to 14-7 with a 3-yard touchdown run. The Bears tied the game 14-14 with 3:51 remaining in regulation on Madison’s 12-yard touchdown run. Madison finished the night with 127 yards and the touchdown on 27 carries.

The Bears finished with 247 yards of total offense and 17 first downs, but were continually turned back by Kentwood’s bend-but-don’t-break defense.

“This is a big win for us. Very big,” Askew said.

Kentwood will try and continue the momentum at 7 p.m. next Friday, when it plays host to Kent-Meridian (0-3) at French Field.

Kentridge 21, Federal Way 13

The Chargers (3-0) received rushing touchdowns from Devin Topps (2 yards), Alex Tyson (6 yards) and Travis McGuire (13 yards) en route to an SPSL North win over the Eagles (0-2 in league, 1-2 overall).

The Kentridge defense continued to shine, keeping the Eagles from the end zone until late in the fourth quarter.

“Federal Way has gotten us the last couple of years, so this is huge for us,” said Kentridge coach Marty Osborn. “The defense is just doing great. They have started out as good as any (defensive) group we’ve ever had. Now, the big question is, can they sustain it?”

The only blemish on an otherwise solid night for Kentridge came in the second quarter, when Topps, a running back/linebacker, had to leave the game with a sprained knee. Topps sat out the entire second half.

“Hopefully it’s not too serious,” Osborn said.

Kentridge will be at Bethel on Thursday in a nonleague crossover game.

Auburn 48, Kent-Meridian 21

Alphonse Wade scored three rushing touchdowns (14, 58 and 39) and pulled in another with a 54-yard reception, leading the Trojans (3-0) past the Royals (0-3) at Auburn Memorial Stadium in the 107th Taylor Trophy game.

The rivalry is the second-oldest in the state and dates back to 1905. With the win, the Trojans evened up the all-time series at 47-47. Since the beginning of the series, there have been 13 ties and seven of the scores were never recorded.

Auburn took a 28-0 lead before Kent-Meridian’s Va’a Logotala, who has been hampered with nagging injuries all season, punched in a 2-yard run. K-M running back B.J. Arceneaux added a 45-yard touchdown run in the third quarter while backup quarterback Steven Joakim found Larren Wright on a 22-yard score moments later.

Despite the loss, K-M coach Trevor Roberts remained pleased with his team’s performance.

“Our kids had no quit in them,” he said. “We gave them everything we had. Offensively, we were pretty effective. It comes down to (defensive) stops and we could not stop them. You just can’t simulate what they do.”

Kent-Meridian quarterback David Jones had to leave the game in the third quarter with cramps in both legs.

The Royals also were playing without six starters on defense.

“We went forward tonight … the kids hung in there,” Roberts said.


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