SAMMAMISH — Harley Kirsch threw for 217 yards and three touchdowns and Brandon Wellington rushed for 146 yards and two scores as Eastside Catholic cruised to a 41-21 victory over Lincoln in the Class 3A district playoffs.
Wellington, playing in place of an injured Henry Jarvis, scored on a 4-yard touchdown run to give Eastside Catholic the early lead on their second possession.
Lincoln responded with a 70-yard drive to the Crusaders’ 1-yard line. However, Marcus Johnson had the ball jarred from his grasp at the goal line and Carter Gonzalez recovered for Eastside Catholic to turn the Abes away.
Wellington and Kirsch combined to lead the Crusaders on a 98-yard scoring drive capped by a 20-yard touchdown pass from Kirsch to Colin MacIlvennie to give Eastside Catholic a 14-0 lead.
“When you’re playing a good football team and playing playoff football, you can’t miss opportunities,” Lincoln coach Jon Kitna said.
Elisha Pa’Aga added a 1-yard touchdown after an interception of Lincoln quarterback Jordan Kitna to give the Crusaders a commanding 21-0 lead.
Kitna finally got Lincoln on the board with a 2-yard touchdown run but Eastside Catholic managed to add another score before the half. MacIlvennie returned the ensuing kickoff to the Lincoln 36 and Kirsch connected with Devon Arbis-Jackson for a 15-yard score to take a 28-7 lead into the break.
Kitna hooked up with Rayshaun Miller for an 80-yard touchdown to open the third quarter to get Lincoln back in the game but Eastside Catholic countered with a methodical 15-play drive capped by a 2-yard Wellington touchdown run to again take command.
“I’m not surprised,” Eastside Catholic coach Jeremy Thielbahr said of Wellington’s performance. “He’s dynamic. He’s fast. But that’s a big injury for us. Henry Jarvis is an extremely good player.”