SEASIDE - This year's Clash turned into a Crush, as the Astoria Fishermen had it all working Friday night at Seaside's Broadway Field in the annual Clatsop Clash football game.
Reverses, double reverses, end arounds, shovel passes ... it was all good, as the Fishermen rang up a 38-7 win over the Gulls, Astoria's first league win since Nov. 3, 2000.
The victory was a long time coming for the Fishermen and head coach Howard Rub, whose team improves to 3-4 overall.
Thank goodness for a six-team league. One week you're in last place, the next you're back in contention for a playoff spot.
That's how it is in the Cowapa League, where Astoria's 1-2 record isn't as bad as it sounds. Of course, its final two games (Banks and Scappoose) won't exactly be a walk in the park.
For now, "the players get to enjoy this win for the whole weekend, the coaches get to enjoy it tonight, and then we'll start getting ready for Banks," Rub said.
KIM ERSKINE - The Daily Astorian
The Seaside Gulls try to block a field goal by the Astoria Fisherman in Friday night's game. Astoria shot past the Seaside defense for a 38-7 win."Until you get that third league loss, you feel like you're alive," he said. "Certainly it would have been good for us to pull out one of those first two games, because we had opportunities. On the positive side, we feel that if we can keep getting better every week, it's not out of the realm of possibility for us."
For the Gulls, Friday night's game went from bad to good, then back to bad, and that's pretty much where it stayed.
Daniel Stowers fielded the opening kickoff near the sideline, stepping out of bounds inside the Gulls' 1-yard line.
From there, Seaside put together a nine-play, 99-yard drive, sparked by a 66-yard run from Jimmy Sibley, who was chased down by Luke Ness at the Astoria 4-yard line.
Three plays later, Scott Lucia barreled into the end zone for the first score.
That's where the Seaside highlights ended. Sibley rushed for 104 yards (all in the first half), and the Gulls had just 133 yards in total offense the remainder of the game.
"To Seaside's credit, the first quarter was pretty scary," Rub said. "Their first drive was 99 yards, and they finished the first quarter with 116, so obviously they were playing some pretty good football."
Following Seaside's opening drive, Astoria responded with a 13-play, 79-yard march, capped by the first of four touchdown passes from Keenan Borgardt, who found Andrew MacLean out of the backfield for an 8-yard score on a fourth-down play.
The teams exchanged turnovers, including an interception in the end zone by Seaside's Jesse Smith, before the Fishermen put together scoring drives of 57 and 71 yards in the second quarter.
"We were aided by the turnover - getting the fumble recovery on their second drive," Rub said. "That really helped stop any momentum they had. Fortunately we were able to capitalize and keep things going."
KIM ERSKINE - The Daily Astorian
Seaside's Daniel Terranova (12) catches a pass for the first down in Friday night's football game against Astoria in Seaside. Astoria's 46 is Luke Ness and 17 is Keenan Borgardt.Adam McAloney scored on a 5-yard run early in the period, and on Astoria's fourth possession of the night, Borgardt completed first down passes to MacLean and James Jasper, before hooking up with Mike Gallegos from 25 yards out for a 19-7 lead.
The same duo combined on an 11-yard touchdown play in the third quarter, and the Fishermen put it away in the fourth, with James Green scoring on a 20-yard shovel pass, and Josh Ray capping the night with a 13-yard scoring run.
Green caught three passes for 51 yards, with each catch coming on shovel passes from Borgardt.
"We've had it in for a long time, but we just haven't run it," said Green, the first-year senior wide receiver. "We finally decided to use it, and it worked. I wanted to run it more, because we were getting some big yardage on it."
Rub said, "We felt like we needed to expand our passing game a little, and putting in the shovel pass was a big part of it. We like it because it's really just an extension of the running game.
"In terms of teaching things up front, you're blocking the same way you would on a running play. It was a great play for us tonight, and I think it will be a great play for us in the future."
The Fishermen were just the latest team to rack up a lot of rushing yards on the Gulls, as Astoria ran for 286 yards on 47 carries. MacLean led the team with 66 yards on the ground.
"We thought we would have an edge up front, and we thought we would be able run the ball," Rub said. "Our execution was decent. It wasn't great.
"The plan of attack was to establish a lead, then kind of mix things up, and experiment a little. We were able to do that."
The Astoria defense limited Seaside all-league receiver Bryan Robison to just two catches for 25 yards.
"Frankie Febus was phenomenal," Rub said of his junior defensive back. "We assigned him to Robison, their best offensive threat, and (Robison) really wasn't a factor tonight. He's their big-play person, and he didn't big-play us at all."
Elsewhere, "the guys up front did well for us, Andrew MacLean ran the ball real well, Matt Stineman had a good game at linebacker, and James Jasper did some things defensively tonight," Rub said.
Borgardt completed 11-of-17 passes for 161 yards, and Astoria had 23 first downs to Seaside's 10.
"Our defense was working real well," Green said. "We did good on both sides of the ball, but our defensive line was making a lot of stops.
"I think we'll give Banks a good game, and hopefully we'll beat 'em."
Astoria plays at Banks Friday, while Seaside is at Scappoose.
Jewell 32, St. Paul 0JEWELL - The Jewell Bluejays are on the doorstep of the playoffs following a 32-0 win over St. Paul Friday night in Casco League football action.
And the Jays can officially open the door to a postseason spot next week if they defeat Riverdale.
Jewell improved to 6-1 overall (2-1 in league) with the win over the Buckaroos, a team formerly coached by Jewell coach Pete Popoff.
And Popoff was calling the right plays against his former team, as Jewell took to the air against the bigger St. Paul squad.
Jays quarterback Joel Johnston completed 11-of-19 passes for 224 yards, including a 92-yard scoring pass to Tim Meier in the third quarter which gave Jewell an 18-0 lead.
Johnston scored on runs of three and two yards in the first half, for a 12-0 halftime advantage.
The Bluejays put the game away in the fourth quarter, as James Spaulding scored on a 9-yard run, and Lucas Spaulding reeled off a 52-yard scoring run.
"St. Paul is a lot bigger than we are, so we couldn't run the ball," Popoff said. "So we spread the field and utilized our quickness.
"I was really pleased with our defense," he said. "Some of those guys really stepped up. Tony Busch had a great game at nose tackle; James Spaulding had his best game of the year; and Tim Meier had a great game at defensive end."
Offensively, Meier caught four passes for 167 yards, while Jewell compiled 301 yards total offense to St. Paul's 169.
Jewell needs to defeat either Riverdale or Oregon School for the Deaf over the next two weeks to clinch a playoff spot. The Jays would have a first-round bye, followed by a possible game at top-ranked Powder Valley.
Warrenton 19, Clatskanie 0WARRENTON - Warrenton all but wrapped up a league championship Friday night at home as the Warriors scored on the first play of the game and never looked back in a 19-0 win over Clatskanie.
Warrenton quarterback Nate McBride ran 72 yards for a touchdown on the first play from scrimmage, on his way to a 100-yard rushing night.
Later in the first half, McBride hit Zach Gantenbein for touchdown passes of 61 and 38 yards, as Gantenbein finished with four catches for 125 yards.
The Warriors need just one win in their final two games to clinch their fourth straight league title. Warrenton plays at Portland Christian (1-6 overall) this week, then finishes the regular season at Corbett, which suffered a 33-20 loss to Portland Christian Friday.
Monroe 39, Knappa 6MONROE - Monroe built a 27-0 halftime lead on its way to a 39-6 nonleague football win over Knappa Friday night.
The Dragons had two running backs reach the 100-yard mark as Nick Mooers rushed for 111 yards on 16 carries with a touchdown and teammate Nathan Nystrom ran for 108 yards on 12 carries with two touchdowns, including a 63-yard run in the first quarter.
Monroe's Benjamin Wall and Nick Payne intercepted passes, with Payne returning his interception 20 yards for a score.
Knappa's only score came in the third quarter, an 8-yard run by Sean Ferguson, who rushed for 66 yards on 17 carries.
The Loggers play at Neah-Kah-Nie Friday.
Ridgefield 63, Ilwaco 0RIDGEFIELD, Wash. - Ridgefield's Jonny Peru ran for 182 yards on just 14 carries, and scored three touchdowns to lead the Spudders to a 63-0 win over Ilwaco Saturday night.
The Fishermen were held to minus-11 yards rushing, while Ilwaco quarterback Ryan Cadwell completed 7-of-14 passes for 160 yards. Tony Crete caught four passes for 80 yards.
Ilwaco hosts La Center Friday.
Azusa Pacific 23, Southern Oregon 14AZUSA, Calif. - The 12th-ranked Azusa Pacific University football team knocked Southern Oregon out of NAIA playoff contention with a 23-14 come-from-behind win Saturday night.
Azusa sophomore running back Ben Buys bested SOU senior All-American Dusty McGrorty in a meeting of the NAIA's top running backs by a 238-51 margin in rushing yardage, and Buys scored the go-ahead touchdown from four yards out with 9:49 minutes remaining in the third quarter.
The APU defense yielded a 1-yard McGrorty touchdown and a 58-yard pass play in the opening quarter, but blocked a pair of second-half field goal attempts and limited SOU (1-4) to 227 total yards - 250 below the school's season average.