Week one is in the books, and we are introducing a new weekly post to NEI. We will start with the 4A and 3A classifications, with hopes to expand into the lower classifications as the season goes along.
I will talk about games I have attended, athletes I saw, and various notes/links from around the state. If you have links you think I should put in this section, please feel free to email them to me at Ringerland@gmail.com.
This week’s big game was a non-league contest between the #2 Union Titans, and host #3 Federal Way Eagles.
The first half was for the most part, all Federal Way. Chico McClatcher and company were simply too fast and physical for their GSHL counterparts.
Federal Way’s defense was especially impressive. DE Alu Taito (’15, 6’2″ 265), DT Robert Savusa (’15, 6’2″ 290), LB’s David Tiumalu (’15, 6’0″ 225) and Charlie Taumoepeau (’15, 6’4″ 240), were in the backfield and around the ball on almost every play.
The second half was a different story, as Union’s backfield combination of Caleb Browning (’15, 5’10” 170) and Alex Berfanger (’15, 5’10” 200) almost single handily took over the game in an attempt to wear down the Eagles, and it worked.
By the fourth quarter Federal Way had lost Taito and Tiumalu to what appeared to be cramping, and couldn’t stop the run. What was a 21-7 halftime lead for Federal Way, ended with a 34-28 victory for Union.
Give credit to the Union coaching staff. What looked like it could’ve been a bad loss, turned out to be a great win for first year head coach Gary McGarvie.
– Federal Way was without three of their top players. Jared Pulu recently had surgery and is expect to miss a few weeks. Chris Tuiasosopo has a leg injury, but could return this week. Andrzej Hughes-Murray missed the game with a hand injury, and should be back soon.
– I can’t say I have ever seen a QB take as beating like Union’s Nolan Henry. He was absolutely blasted multiple times in the first half, and by my count, didn’t miss a play.
– Chico McClatcher is one of the most explosive players this state has ever seen. He scored a couple impressive touchdowns, including a blocked FG for what the PA announcer said was 100 yards.
– The mind boggling stat of the night involves McClatcher, who by my count only touched the ball the ball twice offensively in the second half. Only way McClatcher should see the ball that little is if the half starts with a running clock.
– Federal Way’s D’Jimon Jones is only a junior, but is really starting to look the part of a D1 QB. He still has a long way to go, but may just be the top duel-threat QB in the 2016 class from Washington.
– There is a lot to like about Union senior Tyler Dionne (6’4″ 215). He scored on a 61 yard catch and run in the first half in which he ran right by the defense. Impressive for a athlete his size.
– A name you will definitely want to remember is Alu Taito. He transferred to Federal Way from Farrington (Honolulu, Hawaii) High School, and could be one of Washington’s top DE’s in the 2015 class.
– Is there a better name/number combo in the state than Union’s Jack Bauer who of course picked the number 24. Should be no surprise he came up with an INT to seal the game for the Titans.
– Federal Way travels to Camas (1-0) next weekend, while Union comes back up I-5 to take on the Curtis Vikings (0-1).
– I attended two games this weekend, the other being Juanita’s 44-6 win over Inglemoor, which will have a recap and notes on the 3A week in review.
– I will probably do this on just about every post. If you are looking for scores, the best place to go is WaPrepZone. I have zero affiliation with that site, I just really love the work they do. For up-to-date standings, follow This Link… For scores from week one, follow This Link.
– If you are a fan of college football, and/or recruiting, you know how vital to a program Walk-Ons are. ESPN did a great piece recently about those young men, and there is even a little local connection, as one of the athletes is former Skyline Spartan Jordan Simone. Take a few minutes and watch this great Video.
– Few 4A teams opened with a more impressive performance than the Evergreen (Vancouver) Plainsmen. They tore apart Eisenhower 56-7, and moved up 3 spots in our top 10 rankings, but they didn’t play their best football. Tim Martinez from the Columbian has the game report Right Here.
– Another impressive win this first week came from the Kentwood Conquerors, who shutout the Curtis Vikings 43-0. The Vikings were predicted to finish second in the SPSL South, so time will tell how big this win really is. TJ Cotterill of the Tacoma News Tribune has the story Right Here.
– Adding to the SPSL South talk of Curtis, the Graham-Kapowsin Eagles appear to once again be loaded. They throttled Kentlake 35-0 on Thursday night. If you missed our team preview of the Eagles, you can fight it Right Here.
– The Chiawana Riverhawks dropped out of our top 10 this week, being replaced by Gonzaga Prep. Runningback Jack Bamis had an impressive night, as the Bullpups came from behind to beat the Richland Bombers. I was also just told that Bamis speaks 5 languages! I will find out which ones asap. Thomas Clouse from NW Preps Now has the game recap Right Here.
– It really was not a great weekend for the Mid-Columbia Conference, who finished with a combined 1-7 record between 4A and 3A, with only Kamiakin Braves getting a win over Ferndale.