Sometimes all it takes is a bad loss, followed by a good old boot in the keister to kick-start something great.
That certainly describes what the Bellarmine Prep Lions’ offense has accomplished the past two weeks against playoff-caliber opponents.
All seven drives by the their starting offense netted touchdowns, and No. 9 Bellarmine Prep galloped past Kamiak, 63-21, in a Class 4A district playoff game at Mount Tahoma Stadium on Saturday night.
Running back Nathan Goltermann-Doyle rushed for 206 yards and five touchdowns, and quarterback Lou Millie passed for two scores and ran for another in an impressively efficient showing.
After not scoring an offensive touchdown in a 28-10 loss to Olympia two weeks ago, the Lions beat Gig Harbor, 59-14, last week to clinch their third consecutive Narrows 4A title – and then this output Saturday.
“It was definitely that Olympia game. We just realized we had so much more potential than what we had been playing,” Millie said. “We’ve put it all together these last two weeks and we are playing great. It has been fun.
“We’ve still got a lot more we can do. But we are doing a lot better than we had been. We are hitting our stride at the right time.”
Very little defense showed up early in the game as the teams combined for six touchdowns in the first 101/2 minutes.
Trailing 28-14, Kamiak kept the ball for almost eight minutes, reaching the Lions’ 16 before it started to unravel on successive plays.
The Knights were called for a delay-of-game penalty that pushed them back. On the next play, quarterback Tyler Becker was sacked for a 13-yard loss, setting up third-and-long.
And Becker let it rip down the right sideline – not a wise decision. Linebacker Nick Dionas intercepted it to halt the threat.
For the final 51/2 minutes of the first half, it was all Bellarmine Prep. Goltermann-Doyle broke loose for his fourth touchdown run of the half, this time a 55-yarder off a counter play to push the Lions’ lead to 35-14.
And after a Becker fumble and turnover at the Knights’ 19 on Kamiak’s next series, Bellarmine Prep made it 42-14 on Millie’s 19-yard scoring pass.
“An unusual game,” Kamiak coach Dan Mack said. “You can’t turn the ball over against a team like Bellarmine Prep.”
Kamiak’s fourth turnover of the half – this time a Becker pass that was easily picked off by Millie – allowed the Lions to cash in on a second Garrett McKay scoring catch from 35 yards out with 42 seconds left.
The Lions rolled 322 total yards in the first half – led by Goltermann-Doyle with 172 rushing yards.
Kamiak’s Joseph Binda rushed for 150 yards on 18 carries, including an 80-yard touchdown scamper in the wild first quarter.
Bellarmine Prep travels to Newport of Bellevue next week for first round of the 4A state playoffs.Todd Milles: 253-597-8442 firstname.lastname@example.org @ManyHatsMilles