5A State championship game
Coeur d’Alene Vikings (11-0)
vs. Eagle Mustangs (10-1)
When: Friday, Boise State University, 6 p.m. PST
Road to final: CdA defeated Mountain View and Capital while Eagle topped Lake City and Highland.
At a glance: The two best quarterbacks in Idaho will face off in Brigham Young University-bound Tanner Mangum of Eagle and CdA’s Chad Chalich. On the surface this stacks up as a game filled with offensive fireworks. Don’t be surprised, though, if the defenses have a say in the outcome. Both teams have solid defenses. CdA has won 20 straight dating back to an early loss last season. CdA coach Shawn Amos doesn’t put much stock in the fact that Eagle was upset by Mountain View in the final regular-season game. “It was an aberration,” Amos said. “They were ripe for an upset.” Chalich suffered a hairline fracture in the outside bone of a foot last week. He’s been held out of practice this week but will start. Sophomore backup Gunnar Amos is ready in case he’s needed.
Central Valley Bears (9-2)
at Skyline Spartans (8-3)
When: Saturday, 1 p.m.
How they got here: CV avenged an earlier defeat to Ferris, topping the defending state champion Saxons 23-7. Skyline knocked off Mead 27-17.
At a glance: 4A schools west of the Cascades seem to have a short memory. Ferris won the state title last year, yet folks outside of eastern Washington have already put the Spartans into the semifinals. Skyline’s players had better not be looking ahead, because they will get a rude awakening Saturday. Skyline should be prepared for a physical game when the Bears take the field. It will be finesse versus smash-mouth football, and excuse CV coach Rick Giampietri if he’s just a little excited to see how his Bears fare. CV is playing its best football at the right time. One of the keys will be keeping Skyline’s offense off the field.
Colfax Bulldogs (10-0)
vs. White Swan Cougars (8-3)
When: Friday, Lampson Stadium, Kennewick, 7 p.m.
How they got here: Colfax defeated Warden 22-0 and White Swan topped Colfax-rival DeSales 34-20.
At a glance: The Bulldogs are poised for another deep playoff run under veteran coach Mike Morgan. “We’re playing pretty well,” Morgan said. “They’re focused on what they want to do.” Colfax will face a team that’s much better than when it lost three straight earlier in the season. “They’re two different ballclubs,” Morgan said. “They’re really coming on.” Colfax has been led by senior running back Alvin Li, who has rushed for 1,050 yards and 15 touchdowns.
Lind/Ritzville-Sprague Broncos (9-1)
vs. Waitsburg-Prescott Cardinals (11-0)
When: Saturday, Edgar Brown Stadium, Pasco, noon
How they got here: The Broncos defeated Manson 34-7 last week and W-P throttled Brewster 48-7.
At a glance: The defense, which has carried the Broncos most of the season, will have to play well Saturday or it could be a long game. The Cardinals have a one-two offensive punch in quarterback Zach Bartlow and running back Bill Brown. Bartlow is a double threat passing and running. The Broncos can’t get into a scoring frenzy with the Cardinals.
Almira-Coulee/Hartline Warriors (11-0)
vs. Touchet Indians (8-2)
When: Friday, Moses Lake, 7 p.m.
How they got here: ACH defeated Wilbur-Creston 64-24 last week and Touchet topped Cusick 28-20.
At a glance: The Warriors have been led by senior quarterback Derek Isaak and junior running back Colin Deyarmin. Both also play defense. Both have gained more than 1,200 yards rushing. “I’ve been pleased with our ability to take it week to week, not take anything for granted,” ACH coach Brandon Walsh said. “I feel like we have something to prove after last year. The kids have bought into that and stayed real grounded and have a great work ethic. We’ve got a chance to accomplish something great.”
Wellpinit Redskins (9-2) vs. Pomeroy Pirates (9-1)
When: Saturday, Edgar Brown Stadium, Pasco, 3 p.m.
How they got here: Wellpinit defeated Garfield-Palouse 62-40 and Pomeroy beat Northport 72-28.
At a glance: As junior running back AJ Kieffer has gone so have the Redskins. Kieffer has rushed for more than 1,200 yards and scored 25 touchdowns. “We’ve having a good year and the boys don’t want it to end,” Wellpinit coach Clark Pauls said. “The boys have put in a lot of hard work and obviously the hard work has shown because we’re still playing in the middle of November.”
Odessa-Harrington Titans (7-3)
vs. King’s Way Christian (8-1)
When: Saturday at Centralia High School, 1 p.m.
How they got here: The Titans defeated Colton 48-30 and King’s Way downed Lyle/Wishram 14-12.
At a glance: Junior quarterback Jared King does it all for O-H. He leads in rushing, touchdowns and tackles. Titans coach Bruce Todd likes his team’s chances. “They’re beatable as long as we don’t beat ourselves,” Todd said. “We’ve been playing well the last couple of weeks. I hope we continue to peak at the right time.”