With an opportunity to help his team clinch at least a share of the SPSL 2A Sound Division championship at South Sound Stadium in Lacey on Friday night, River Ridge senior wide receiver Trey Dorfner came to play.
Dorfner caught three passes for 113 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed for 84 yards on nine carries, including a 55-yard touchdown run, to lead the Hawks to a 42-17 win over Eatonville.
River Ridge scored on its first possession of the game when senior quarterback Kelle Sanders connected with Dorfner for a 42-yard touchdown on a 4th-and-4.
Eatonville appeared up for the challenge as they answered the Hawks’ touchdown with a field goal to cut the deficit to 7-3, but River Ridge followed with 35 points to put the game away.
“We haven’t come out in the first quarter big, yet (this season),” River Ridge head coach Steve Schultz said. “Against a real tough opponent like Eatonville, which only had one loss, our offense came out rolling. Coach (Jack) Zilla, running our offense, he’s got everything churning right now at the right time.”
Dorfner led the way, scoring the Hawks’ first three touchdowns. In addition to his 42-yard TD catch and 55-yard TD run, he also had a 64-yard TD reception.
Senior quarterback Kelle Sanders also proved to be a problem for the Cruisers’ defense. Sanders finished the game 12 of 19 passing for 297 yards and three touchdowns. He also added a 7-yard touchdown run.
“What’s amazing with Kelle is he’s a first-year quarterback, really,” Schultz said. “He sees the field and he’s checking down. On one of our bootlegs, he checked 1-2-3 and then threw the backside post. We’ll spend a whole four years trying to teach a quarterback to do that and he naturally does that.”
The Hawks led 28-3 at halftime and added more early in the third quarter. After forcing Eatonville to punt, River Ridge scored on its first possession after halftime when Sanders threw his third touchdown of the game, a 13-yard strike to senior running back Padric Green.
Sophomore Maleko Mina added an 8-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter to give River Ridge a 42-3 lead. With the Hawks well ahead, Mina got several carries in the second half and made the most of his time, rushing for 81 yards on 12 carries.
“(Mina) runs hard,” Schultz said. “He’s up-and-coming. He’s just a sophomore and we’re excited about his future.”
Though the Cruisers suffered their second defeat of the season, senior wide receiver/linebacker Zarak Scruggs provided some electricity late in the game with a kickoff return of 95 yards for a touchdown and an interception return of 90 yards for a score.
NO. 5 RIVER RIDGE
RR – Trey Dorfner 42 pass from Kelle Sanders (Matt O’Leary kick)
E – Brendon Morton 32 FG
RR – Dorfner 64 pass from Sanders (O’Leary kick)
RR – Dorfner 55 run (O’Leary kick)
RR – Sanders 7 run (O’Leary kick)
RR – Padric Green 13 pass from Sanders (O’Leary kick)
RR – Maleko Mino 8 run (O’Leary kick)
E – Zarak Scruggs 95 kickoff return (Morton kick)
E – Scruggs 90 interception return (Morton kick)
RUSHING – E: J. Bridges 11-56. RR: T. Dorfner 9-84; M. Mina 11-80.
PASSING – E: T. Schoepf 7-15-1-71. RR: K. Sanders 12-19-0-297.
RECEIVING – E: J. Brandt 3-26; R. Antonson 2-22. RR: T. Dorfner 3-113; R. Blash 2-76.