AUBURN — Arguably the two most dynamic quarterbacks in the state went head-to-head Friday night and the upset special found a home with Cascade of Everett coming out on top, 31-28, over Auburn Riverside at Memorial Stadium.
Guiding the Bruins to victory, Cascade quarterback Josh Smith led the game winning drive with his ability to elude rushers with his impressive athletic ability and size.
Getting his team down to the 15-yard line, it was enough to get Spencer Bowlden the 23-yard game winning field goal opportunity in the waning seconds.
Riverside tried to replicate the Cal Bears’ historic kickoff return from the 1982 Big Game in the final seconds, but the Ravens were unable to find much space before being brought down.
“This is one of the all-timers,” Cascade coach Joe Cronin said following the game. “They’re in state. I couldn’t be happier for these guys. Holy cow, what a game. It’s hard to put into words.”
Smith, who is committed to play at South Alabama University next fall, finished the game with 347 total yards and three touchdowns.
Countering on the other side of the field, Riverside’s Kevin Thomson, a senior who is also receiving Division-I college interest as a quarterback, carried Riverside on his shoulders throughout, always keeping the Ravens within a score of the tie or lead.
“That kid played his butt off all year long,” Auburn Riverside coach Bryant Thomas said. “He made plays whenever we needed it and it was the same thing tonight. We just came up short. It’s a disappointing night.
“This team (Cascade) earned it. They played hard. They played till the end of the game. They made a play when they needed to make a play.”
Riverside is still looking for its first playoff win in school history, while Cascade advances to play Camas next week.