Meadowdale dominated play in the first half and then kept its cool when Glacier Peak mounted a second-half comeback, prevailing 30-19 in a Wesco 3A South football game Friday night at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Snohomish.
The Mavericks took a 23-5 lead into halftime and them fumbled on the opening series of the second half. The Grizzlies took advantage as running Iain Black scored on a 2-yard run to cut the Meadowdale lead to 23-12.
The Mavericks (3-0 in the league, 3-1 overall) went 3-and-out on the subsequent offensive series and Glacier Peak got ball back on the Meadowdale 37 with a chance to cut the lead to 5 points with a touchdown.
But the Maverick defense stiffened and forced Glacier Peak to turn the ball over on down when the Grizzlies (2-1, 3-1) could not convert on a fourth-and-8 on the Meadowdale 35.
Meadowdale senior running back Malix Braxton later scored on a 28-yard run to extend the Mavericks’ lead to 30-12 with 8:02 left in the fourth quarter
“I’m really pleased with how the kids kept battling throughout the four quarters,” said Meadowdale coach Mike Don. “Sometimes you can get a letdown when you get up and I thought our kids kept battling.”
When the Grizzlies cut the Meadowdale lead to 11 points early in the third quarter, Don wasn’t too concerned and tried to convey that to his players.
“You make a mistake (fumble) and we’re still up two scores. It was 23-12 at that point,” Don said. “It was awesome to see the kids keep their heads up and keep battling through. That’s something we had trouble with last year at times. I thought the kids did a great job with two really hard-fought games in a row. That’s hard to do.”
The Mavericks took an early 13-0 in the first quarter as quarterback Caleb Tingstad found Braxton on a 5-yard touchdown pass and then after Meadowdale got the ball back on a Braxton interception, Tingstad motored for a 23-yard touchdown run that surprised his coach.
“I didn’t know he had those kinds of wheels in the keeper around the end,” Don said. “There he goes up the sidelines. It was a pretty exciting play.”
Brett Schafer booted a 43-yard field goal with just over a minute left in the first quarter and the Mavericks took a 16-0 lead into the second quarter.
With just under two minutes left in the second quarter, Tingstad threw an 82-yard scoring strike to Braxton, and Meadowdale led 23-0.
“Caleb played really well. He made some big plays for us,” Don said. “Malik had some big plays for us too. We were able to get him deep on a pass and he broke a big run. It’s great having him do some different things for us, playing some different positions. It keeps teams honest on us.”
A deep punt pinned the Mavericks close to their goal line and Tingstad was sacked for a safety. Glacier Peak’s Spencer Pettit closed out the half with a 44-yard field goal.
Don wasn’t surprised that the Grizzlies played better in the second half.
“They made some really good adjustments at halftime that gave us some real problems,” Don said. “We had to readjust to what they were doing. I thought they played really well in the second half and so did our guys. We were able to hang.”
Meadowdale has lost to Glacier Peak the last two years so the victory on the Grizzlies’ home field was especially satisfying.
“It’s real big,” Don said. “We were able to come out here tonight and battle to a hard-fought victory against a really good football team.”
– By David Pan