The White River Hornets bruised their way to a 27-14 victory over host Orting in the first round of Class 2A state playoffs.
White River scored on four of its five drives in the first half, putting Orting down 20-0 going into half.
A big part of the early onslaught was the play of running back Keenan Fagan, who finished with two touchdowns and was constantly the most dangerous player on the field. In addition, kicker Alex Morris hit line drive field goals from 42 and 38 yards.
Its a big, big win, White River coach Joe Sprouse said. We havent had a win in the playoffs since 2004. These kids know that. We know were going to have a tough opponent next week. We have to start working on them tomorrow.
Although Orting gained momentum early in the second half with big plays on special teams and defense leading to two touchdowns, the deficit proved too much to overcome for the Cardinals despite bringing the score within six points.
We just said one play at a time. We have 24 minutes, Orting coach Marty Parkhurst said. Scoring 21 was what we thought we had to do and weve done that regularly. We thought we had a chance, but it was too little, too late.
Sustaining a passing game proved difficult for Orting and quarterback Eddie Prong in the sheets of rain and heavy wind.
Prong, who led the SPSL 2A in passing, completed 4 of 8 in attempts.
White River will travel to face the winner of Sehome and Tumwater next.
We take it one day at a time, Sprouse said of the next round. That really is our mantra. Tomorrow is our chance to get better and the stage we play on does not matter to our players. Its not about them, its about us.