TOPPENISH — What initially appeared to be a costly bad break turned out to be the pivotal moment preceding Toppenish’s second-half scoring burst against Mount Baker on Friday night.
The Wildcats trailed by five points when an inadvertent whistle negated a long kick return and potentially a touchdown for Izaiah Maldonado, causing anger and confusion on the Toppenish sideline. But after nearly failing to recover an onside kick, the Wildcats roared to life in all phases of the game to score four touchdowns in less than six minutes.
“It riled us up,” wide receiver Nick Cortes said of the inadvertent whistle. “But you’ve got to bounce back and put some points up on the board.”
He scored on a 16-yard touchdown pass to put Toppenish ahead for good in a 48-31 win over Wildcat coach Jason Smith’s alma mater. Perez threw for three touchdowns and ran for three more, including a six-yard scramble on fourth down to give Toppenish a 32-25 lead.
But the senior and his explosive offense started slow in a game that kicked off at 6 p.m., an hour earlier than usual because of how far the Mountaineers traveled. They showed no ill effects from a long bus ride while jumping out to a 13-0 lead, and senior tailback Marcques George ran for a game-high 118 yards.
Perez said it took some time to adjust to the heavy pressure from Mount Baker’s defense, which contained the Toppenish running game all night. Instead, the Wildcats found success through short passes and a pair of longer throws by Perez on first-half touchdowns by senior Shane Rivera.
“That’s 6-4 over, I don’t know, a 5-7 or something corner, I’m taking my chances all the time,” Perez said. “I trust Shane for sure.”
Perez completed his last seven passes to finish 19 of 25 for 180 yards.
He also benefited from great field position set up by special teams. Toppenish capitalized on a long return by Maldonado in the first half, then scored touchdowns in the second half following a fumbled kick return, a four-yard punt and two bad snaps to the punter.
Cortes said it meant a lot for Toppenish to put up so many points after barely scoring enough to beat Mount Baker 26-22 on the road in last year’s 1A first round. The Wildcats (2-1) will look to keep rolling next Friday in their final nonleague game at Cashmere, set to kick off at 5 p.m.
— Luke Thompson
MB — Landon Smith 2 run (kick)
MB — Marcques George 8 run (kick failed)
Top — Shane Rivera 11 pass from Josh Perez (Izaiah Maldonado pass from Perez)
MB — Landon Hanstead 61 pass from Smith (run failed)
Top — Rivera 23 pass from Perez (kick failed)
Top — Perez 6 run (pass failed)
MB — George 9 run (run failed)
Top — Nick Cortes Jr. 16 pass from Perez (pass failed)
Top — Perez 1 run (Alek Zapien pass from Perez)
Top — Timmy Torres 2 run (kick failed)
Top — Perez 1 run (Anthony Ozuna pass from Perez)
MB — Tanyen Staton 36 pass from Smith (pass failed)
RUSHING — Mount Baker, George 17-118, Brady West 6-17, Smith 4-15, Wilhem Maloley 4-9, Hanstead 1-2. Toppenish, Timmy Torres 11-31, Ozuna 6-20, Kiyano Zuniga 2-9, Angelo Simental 2-4, Perez 6-0.
PASSING — Mount Baker, Smith 8-15-1-157. Toppenish, Perez 19-25-0-180, Torres 1-1-0-5.
RECEIVING — Mount Baker, Hanstead 3-75, Staton 2-62, Dylan Moa 1-10, Hayden Rosse 1-7, West 1-3. Toppenish, Rivera 5-59, Cortes Jr. 5-49, Torres 5-44, Maldonado 3-34, Zapien 1-5, Adrian Villanueva 1-(-6).
Sophomore Moses Spurrier threw for a season-high 286 yards and two touchdowns in the Cadets' CBBN opener at Zaepfel Stadium.
Spurrier connected on 17 of 27 passes and both of the touchdown passes were to Javon Davis in the third quarter. Davis finished with four catches for 117 yards and teammate Judah Oldenkamp had seven receptions for 107 yards.
Moses Lake, the defending conference champion, threw for 365 yards and four touchdowns.
Eisenhower travels to Wenatchee on Friday.
Ike — Javon Davis 67 pass from Moses Spurrier (kick failed)
Ike — Davis 14 pass from Spurrier (David Aguilar kick)
RUSHING — Eisenhower, Spurrier 4-19, Marcus Cunningham 2-3, Corbin Roy 2-2, Greysen Sartain 11-(-9).
PASSING — Eisenhower, Spurrier 17-27-0-286.
RECEIVING — Eisenhower, Davis 4-117, Judah Oldenkamp 7-107, Sartain 3-59, Maverick Pastor 1-3.
SUNNYSIDE — Brent Maldonado threw touchdown passes to Noah McNair and Cody Diddens in the loss to the unbeaten Lions, who are ranked No. 5 in Class 3A.
The Grizzlies (0-3) will open CBBN play on Friday hosting West Valley.
GRANDVIEW — Junior quarterback Kory McClure threw touchdown passes to four different receivers during a 35-point second quarter for the third-ranked Mustangs in their CWAC opener on Thursday.
McClure hit 22 of 28 passes for 260 yards and connected with 13 different receivers.
Prosser (1-0, 3-0), which also got two rushing scores by Neo Medrano, finally plays its home opener on Sept. 24 when it hosts Aberdeen.
Pro — Neo Medrano 30 run (Max Flores kick)
Pro — Carson Bailey 7 pass from Kory McClure (Flores kick)
Pro — Erik Delgado 4 pass from McClure (Flores kick)
Pro — Isaac Kernan 12 pass from McClure (Flores kick)
Pro — Chris Veloz 65 pass from McClure (Flores kick)
Pro — Medrano 2 run (Flores kick)
Pro — Havic Prieto 23 interception return (Flores kick)
Pro — Safety, ball snapped through end zone
Pro — FG Flores 28
RUSHING — Prosser, Medrano 4-38, Cade Harris 6-27, Delgado 1-16, Anthony Martin 4-12, Rainer 1-9.
PASSING — Prosser, McClure 22-28-1-260; Jacob Rainer 5-6-0-71.
RECEIVING — Prosser, Kernan 6-63, Veloz 3-79, Nate Robinson 3-44, Tommy Morfin 2-41, Josiah Campos 2-25, Abel Acosta 2-17, Harris 2-14, Bailey 2-12, Sam Ramos 1-13, Prieto 1-8, Martin 1-7, Delgado 1-4, Noah Moreno 1-4.
East Valley’s hot start to the season continued as senior running back Christian Flores scored four rushing touchdowns and quarterback Garin Gurtler threw for two scores, one to Teegan Hooper and one to Beaudry Benedetti.
The unbeaten Red Devils led 21-0 after one quarter and increased their lead to 41-7 heading into the fourth to cruise to their third straight win.
Hooper led a complete defensive performance with a pick-six to cap off EV’s scoring in the fourth quarter, giving him an interception in three straight games. Coach Eric Berg said senior middle linebacker Jayvon Atkins had a big night for an East Valley defense that earned shutouts in its first two games.
The Red Devils led 28-0 before their shutout streak ended and their offense showed more firepower than it did while beating Quincy 21-0 and topping Naches Valley 16-0. It’s East Valley’s first 3-0 start since the 2004 team that went 13-1 and lost to Othello in the 2A state championship.
“Great start to the season,” Berg said. “But we know we’ve got a tough, tough league in the CWAC and we know we’ve got a tough game coming up against Ephrata.”
A defensive battle ended in a 7-6 Red Devils loss last season at Ephrata, which lost 14-13 to Othello on Friday to fall to 1-2.
MATTAWA — Mitchell Helgert had a 99-yard touchdown run and Dylan Kohl threw two touchdown passes as the Rangers picked up their first win.
Helgert finished with 186 yards on 13 carries, and Kohl connected with Thane Denny and Dylan Mueller for scores and ran one in. Jesse Benge had three sacks.
Naches Valley gained 295 yards on the ground and added Kohl's 184 in the air. The Rangers play at College Place on Friday.
RUSHING — NV, Mitchell Helgert 13-186-1 TD, Thane Denny 11-78, Dylan Kohl 8-34-1 TD, Jett Hires 3-4, Jesus Mendoza 1-(minus 7).
PASSING — NV, Kohl 7-10-0-184.
RECEIVING — NV, Denny 2-105-1 TD, Dylan Mueller 2-35-1 TD, Hires 1-30, Mendoza 1-12.
COWICHE — Cayden Hakala caught two touchdown passes from Salvador Gonzalez, the second of which made it a one-score game in the fourth quarter.
Gonzalez threw for 174 yards and Kendall Rosenkranz hauled in eight passes for 73 yards.
The Scotties, who travel to Manson on Friday, led 14-8 in the second quarter before D-W answered with three of its four rushing touchdowns to open a 28-14 lead.
High — Adrian Ceja 12 fumble recovery (Yacir Perez kick)
High — Cayden Hakala 56 pass from Salvador Gonzalez (Perez kick)
High — Hakala 24 pass from Gonzalez (kick failed)
RUSHING — Highland, Fabian Pacheco 13-51, Gonzalez 6-24, Yahir Castro 2-0.
PASSING — Gonzalez 13-22-0-174.
RECEIVING — Kendall Rosenkranz 8-73, Hakala 2-80, Ceja 1-10, Pacheco 1-6, Castro 1-5.
KITTITAS — Michael Lenke threw three touchdown passes and ran for another to lead Burbank.
Josh Rosbach connected with Brendon Trudell for the first score of the game and ran 46 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter, pulling Kittitas within 14-13 at the break.
Kittitas plays at River View on Thursday.
Kittitas — Brendon Trudell 33 pass from Josh Rosbach (Jonathan Martin kick)
Bur — Elijah Kinsey 1 run (pass failed)
Bur — 33 pass from Michael Lenke (pass good)
Kittitas — Rosbach 46 run (kick failed)
Bur — 13 pass from Lenke (kick good)
Bur — Michael Lenke 1 run (kick good)
Bur — Quincy Scott 33 pass from Lenke (kick good)
ADNA — The Cougars trekked to sixth-ranked Adna and will make their third road trip in four weeks when they visit Dayton-Waitsburg next Friday.
WS — Willie Dittentholer 38 pass from Braden Blodgett (pass failed)
RUSHING — WS, Robert Haggerty 10-86, Danner Deane 6-42, Dante Van Pelt 4-12.
PASSING — WS, Roger Valdez 6-12-0-80, Blodgett 1-1-0-38.
RECEIVING — WS, Blodgett 6-80, Dittentholer 1-38.