If it comes down to sniffing out an offensive play with the game on the line, get Keith Ross on your side.
The Sumner football coach who specializes in late-game defensive stands did it again to the Orting Cardinals in a wild South Puget Sound League 2A game.
With less than three minutes to go, Orting had three plays from the Spartans’ 1-yard line. On all three runs, the Cardinals were stuffed, including fullback Connor Rose’s fourth-down plunge on a dive play, and third-ranked Sumner escaped with a 24-23 victory at Sunset Chev Stadium.
In the huddle before the fourth-down play, Ross told his players to load up on the inside run. After all, they had halted a late Orting drive on fourth-and-short in last year’s 14-13 road victory.
“We guessed right,” Ross said.
A wall of Sumner defenders brought down Rose just before the goal-line, and Sumner took over with 1:45 remaining with a 24-21 lead.
“At the 1-inch line, they beat us at the point of attack,” Orting coach Marty Parkhurst said. “There was not a lot of wiggle room for Connor.”
The Spartans ran three plays, gaining 7 yards. On fourth down, quarterback Chase Torgison ran out of the back of the end zone for a Cardinals’ safety with 30 seconds to go.
The Cardinals returned the kickoff to the Spartans’ 36. They ran one play – quarterback Eddie Prong was sacked by defensive linemen Zach Summers and Jesse Beringer – and time ran out.
Sumner had a 17-0 early before the Cardinals ran off 21 consecutive points, capped by Prong’s 11-yard touchdown run with four minutes to go in the third quarter.
The Spartans regained the lead, 24-21, on Brandon Tuilaepa’s 1-yard touchdown run early in the fourth quarter.
“In 15 years, no one will say you barely beat Orting,” Ross said. “They will say we were 6-0.”
At Steilacoom 56, Fife 31: Running back Brian Thomas ran for 261 yards and five touchdowns, and also added 100 receiving yards and the host Sentinels took apart the visiting Trojans.
Gig Harbor 54, at Stadium 7: Sterling Brown rushed for 135 yards and three touchdowns, and Connor Scanlan tossed a pair of long touchdown passes (59, 60) as the Tides won at Stadium Bowl.
Puyallup 40, at Emerald Ridge 39: Brad McDougall kicked a game-winning 46-yard field goal as time expired, but the other real hero was a receiver with the fancy footwork.
Karl Fjellstad hauled in a 15-yard pass from Brendan Illies and stepped out of bounds at the Jaguars’ 29 with 0.1 second remaining. Illies completed 3-of-5 passes for 48 yards on the final drive in the final 40 seconds to get the Vikings in scoring position.
At Federal Way 47, Beamer 28: Now Chico McClatcher can claim when he leaves high school, he has scored a touchdown in every way possible.
The speedy junior amassed 317 all-purpose yards for the No. 6 Eagles, and his 89-yard fumble return for a score gave him a sixth different way of scoring a touchdown. He had returned a punt, kickoff and interception, and caught and ran for a touchdown in his career prior to Friday.
Graham-Kapowsin 48, at Bethel 14: Teague James rushed for 228 yards and four touchdowns, and the No. 4 Eagles won the big intra-district rivalry game at Art Crate Field.
At Curtis 41, Spanaway Lake 8: The Vikings’ defense starred with seven sacks and two interceptions, giving quarterback Scott Wismer (five total touchdowns) and the offense many chances to score in University Place.
At Auburn Riverside 50, Kent-Meridian 27: Ravens’ quarterback Kevin Thomson (five touchdown passes) upstaged counterpart Quincy Carter (three TD runs), and the Ravens remained undefeated after their win at Memorial Stadium.
Wilson 78, at Mount Tahoma 6: Isaiah Simpson totaled 268 all-purpose yards, and got the Rams rolling with a 30-yard touchdown scamper on the game’s first play, and ninth-ranked Wilson won at Mount Tahoma Stadium.
Lincoln 41, at Shelton 6: Jordan Kitna threw for 262 yards and three touchdowns as the Abes cruised on the road.
BJ Hawthorne had the big defensive play for Lincoln, picking off Jake Beck’s pass and returning it 35 yards for a touchdown with 3:43 remaining in the first quarter to give the Abes a 13-0 lead.
At Peninsula 17, Auburn Mountainview 10: The Seahawks overcame 11 penalties and finally got the lead for good on Avega Siolo’s 12-yard touchdown run with 9:20 remaining at Roy Anderson Field.
Peninsula’s Marque Kriebel knocked down a Lions’ pass on the game’s final play.
At Eatonville 51, Chimacum 14: Seven different Cruisers tallied scores in the rout at home. One of them was George Tomao’s 56-yard punt return for a touchdown in the third quarter.