The Peninsula Seahawks swooped into Joe Albi Stadium Friday night and used a gritty ground game and stingy defense to dismantle Mt. Spokane 22-0.
The Seahawks went to the run in the second half to open up what was an otherwise tightly played and evenly matched game. But the Wildcats could neither stop the run nor find an offense to counter it.
“They have good size and they leaned on us a little bit,” Mt. Spokane coach Terry Cloer said. “We didn’t do a good job of playing run defense.”
The game, which was delayed an hour because of lightning, started with crushing hits, stingy defenses and a night that was difficult for kickers.
The Wildcats started the game by forcing a Seahawks fumble. But their first snap from scrimmage resulted in a blind-side sack of quarterback Andrew Viehman. The Wildcats then lost even more yardage before punting.
The Mt. Spokane defense then forced a three-and-out only to have Caleb Countryman fumble the punt to give the Seahawks the ball at the Wildcats 19-yard line.
The Wildcats defense held but Peninsula scored on a 30-yard field goal. Mt. Spokane responded with its best drive in the first half that finally stalled at the Peninsula 20. However, Cody McDonald’s 37-yard field-goal attempt went wide.
It stayed that way until just inside the second quarter when Peninsula punter Deboreae McClain – who earlier scampered on a fake to keep the drive alive – rolled a punt all the way to the Mt. Spokane 1.
On the first play after that, Dillon Lionello was tackled in the end zone for a safety to make it 5-0.
In the second half, the Seahawks got a 26-yard touchdown run from Cameron Lewis and a 1-yard plunge by Blake Cantu to make it 19-0. Peninsula kicker Ben Stanford added 31-yard field goal to complete the scoring.
“We’ve got a young team,” Cloer said. “They’ve got to learn how to bounce back from adversity.”