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Lake Stevens Drops the Hammer on Glacier Peak 57-17
The Vikings open playoffs this Friday in Lake Stevens after 54th straight Wesco win
Lake Stevens, at jam-packed Viking Stadium last Friday night, nailed down its ninth consecutive Wesco championship (54 straight wins!) with a 57-17 win over Glacier Peak.
For the second straight game, an Isaac Redford interception just before halftime turned a close game around in Lake's favor and initiated a second half blowout for the Vikings.
In its previous game, at Kamiak, with less than a minute left and Lake clinging to a narrow lead, Redford's interception set up a Viking TD.
Same thing vs. Glacier Peak. Lake looked like it was going to be behind by 10-7 at halftime when Redford's interception of GP quarterback River Lien on the Viking 42 instantly led to Viking QB Kolton Matson's deep 58-yard TD pass to a wide-open Cassidy Bolong-Banks for a 14-10 Viking lead 40 seconds before halftime (Macray Flanders added the PAT boot). This was a sweet comeback for B-B, who had dropped an identical pass from Matson late in the first quarter.
Glacier Peak, in taking a 10-0 lead in the second quarter, looked at that point to be worthy of its ranking as the state's number one 4A team. The Grizzlies took the opening kickoff and rushed steadily downfield, gaining 70 yards in 10 plays until a couple of penalties forced Aiden Larsen's 35-yard field goal. 3-0 GP, at 4:26 of the first quarter.
Lake then drove to the GP 44 before Matson's fourth-down pass to a wide-open Bolong-Banks, looking like a sure touchdown, was dropped.
GP took advantage of that break by driving the 44 yards in eight rushing plays to take a 10-0 lead at 10:28 of the second quarter. Lien scored from the five, Larsen adding the PAT.
Lake's response, following a short GP kickoff to the Viking 46, was to mount a six-play scoring drive featuring Matson's 14-yard pass to Redford (nifty catch by the latter), a 16-yard Jayden Limar run (great moves), and Limar's seven-yard TD run. 10-7 GP at 8:16 of the second quarter.
That would have been the halftime score were it not for the above-outlined Redford interception and the perfect Matson to B-B bomb.
Lake received the second half kickoff and four plays and 63 yards later was in the end zone, via B-B's 50-yard reverse (his season-long specialty, nicely blocked by the Viking line, as always). 21-10, at 10:28 of the third quarter.
A key tackle of GP running back Ryan King by Cole Becker and Gabe Kylany then held the Grizzlies to four-and-out, Lake receiving the punt on its own 25. Six plays and 75 yards later is was 27-10, at 7:08 of the third quarter, via Matson completions of 19 and 29 yards to Becker and Redford, respectively, Limar scoring on a three-yard run. Flanders' PAT was blocked.
GP's last threat to get back into the game followed, an 85-yard, five play drive which saw Lien (who had thrown just five passes, with one completion for 15 yards in the first half) accounting for all 85 yards via four completions for 57 yards and his own 28-yard keeper. His 35-yard TD pass to fellow All-State candidate Trey Leckner cut Lake's lead to 27-17 at 4:46 of the third quarter.
After that, the dam broke for the Vikings who poured it on for the game's final 30 points:
Redford's super over the shoulder catch for a 27-yard TD pass from Matson.
A one-yard Limar TD run, preceded by Matson's 26-yard pass to Redford on the one.
A 17-yard Limar TD run.
Ashten Hendrickson's sack of Lien in his own end zone for a Viking safety. Hendrickson led the charge of several Vikings forcing Lien for a 16-yard loss into his end zone where his desperation pass was ruled intentional grounding.
Nathan Nippert's TD fumble recovery in the end zone, a 14-yard GP loss.
Bolong-Banks and Redford combined for seven catches for 162 yards and 2 TDs.
Lake outgained GP by 387 to 237 yards overall.
Leading Viking tacklers were Joe McGinnis and Mason Turner, with 11 each.
In addition to Hendrickson's QB sack for a safety, Bryce Slezak was also credited with a solo sack.
At the time of this writing it wasn't known who Lake's first Playoffs opponent will be, at Viking Stadium either this Friday or Saturday. Kevin Hulten will fill in Journal readers with that info. (Vikings host Bethel Friday, 7 pm in Lake Stevens thanks Mike! - Kev)