There’s one word I’m hesitant to use in the first week, and I understand that it’s in big letters on our high-schools page today, but stay with me; the word is upset. Because to declare an upset on such a subjective thing as a preseason ranking, basically a combination of last year’s success and this year’s hype, often isn’t in line with reality. Edmonds-Woodway didn’t begin in our Class 4A top 10 last season, but they went to the state semifinals. Skyline, eventual 3A champ last season, started seventh. Until teams play the games, the honest truth is we simply don’t know what’s going to happen.
But I don’t know if anyone outside of Issaquah had the Eagles beating Bothell last night, and doing it so convincincly. For week one, this is about as close to conceding an upset as I will get. By the end of the game, the Eagles’ fans were cheering “Bring on Skyline,” and it seemed more than possible that the Eagles — who lost 24-7 to the Spartans last season — can make the KingCo Crest division interesting.
This was extraordinarily drawn-out game, taking almost three hours (I’m pretty sure the Redskins and Giants wrapped it up more quickly) because of penalties, many of which seemed to require an hour-long conference call for the referees. But if anything, the penalties hurt Issaquah more. It was Issaquah’s front four on defense that put the hurt on Bothell.
Bothell simply could not get any push on Issaquah in the second half, and the Cougars rushed for only 9 second-half yards. With former quarterback Johnny Hekker at Oregon State, actually starting as a punter, the Cougars passing game has some work to do, but they were going to rely on the run this season, and Issaquah shut that down. Issaquah quarterback Joey Bradley often looked polished, but he had to only throw three times in the second half, because the Eagles’ defense was not giving up anything. This is the way Bothell’s used to winning.
Meanwhile, down South, Auburn beat Federal Way, and considering the two tied in the SPSL North coaches poll, this wasn’t too much of a surprise. Both teams were missing some important players, but Federal Way was without Washington State recruit RB/DB Andre Barrington. But not even he could have made up the rushing difference in this one: 284 to 22. As Bothell found out, it’s hard to win when you can’t get a push on the ground. And as Auburn kept running, the Trojans also ran out the clock on a 21-14 win.
Two scores I wanted to share from around the state: Ferris beats North Central 49-6 and Moses Lake beats Hanford 43-21.
1. Shay Patton, Spanaway Lake, football. Ran for 260 yards on 27 carries, with three touchdowns, in the Sentinels’ 56-27 win against Beamer.
2. Grant Gellatly, Issaquah, football. Ran for 125 yards and two touchdowns, and he added a 13-yard receiving TD.
3. Jeff Goeuveia, Auburn, football. Had 130 rushing and two touchdowns — including the winner in the third quarter.
Tonight’s top games
1. Edmonds-Woodway vs. Meadowdale, football, 8 p.m. at Edmonds Stadium. The WesCo showdown of the week pits a pair of teams ranked in the top five of our preseason 4A and 3A polls.
2. Prosser at Redmond, football, 7:30 p.m. The defending Class 2A champ gets a 4A challenge right off the bat. Come to see Prosser WR Kirby Moore — who could break the national receiving TD record — and stay to see Redmond’s 270-pound (average) line do its work up front.
3. Emerald City Volleyball Invitational, volleyball, all day at Eastlake High School. The volleyball season gets its start, though it’s down to four teams now. And I’d like to see, at some point, the state’s top teams — like Mead or Kentwood — in this tournament.