Prep football: Late field goal sinks Warriors

Edmonds-Woodway High School cheerleaders wore red in support of Marysville-Pilchuck High School Monday night.
Edmonds-Woodway High School cheerleaders wore red shirts in support of Marysville-Pilchuck High School Monday night.

Glacier Peak’s Spencer Pettit kicked a 45-yard field goal as time expired Monday night, lifting the visiting Grizzlies to a 20-17 victory over the Warriors of Edmonds-Woodway. Pettit, who earlier made a 56-yarder to end the first half, put the final touches on a game that saw multiple lead changes and the Warriors just miss on several scoring chances.

“Both teams made enough plays to win and enough plays to lose,” said Grizzly coach Rory Rosenbach.

Following a Nick Morales punt that rolled into the end zone, the Grizzlies started their final drive from their own 20. As he had all night, quarterback Brady Southard immediately found Justin Guffey for 17 yards and a penalty moved the ball all the way to the E-W 45. Runs of 6, 3 and 8 yards moved the ball down to the 28 with 17 seconds left. GP spiked the ball, then Southard downed it at the Warrior 28,  setting up Pettit’s heroics. The senior, who also plays cornerback and also is on the Grizzly soccer team, calmly nailed the kick.

“He’s a good kick, but more impressive is he’s a good cornerback as well. He’s not some kicker over there just warming up,” said Rosenbach.

Edmonds-Woodway tied the game at 17 on a Ebrima Fatty 20-yard field goal. The kick was set up by a 72-yard kick-off return from Abdoulie Jatta. Tyler Rheinford had runs of 20 and seven yards, but the drive stalled when a Nick Morales pass to Brandon Hohengarten was broken up in the end zone by Pettit, denying E-W the chance at the go-ahead score.

The first half went by quickly, with both teams mostly keeping it on the ground. After stopping Glacier Peak on their first three plays, E-W had an early chance to score abated when a screen pass to Hohengarten for a touchdown was called back on a hold. The opportunity was set up by a 39-yard bootleg run by Morales on the second play from scrimmage which, when added to a personal foul on the play, quickly had the Warriors in striking distance at the 16. After the nullified touchdown, E-W went backward with Morales getting sacked to the 34 and then turning the ball over on downs after a short pass play.

After three Grizzly incomplete passes and a punt, E-W’s second drive started at its own 31. Again, Morales used his feet and combined with a penalty the Warriors were inside GP territory. Following a 27-yard swing pass to Rheinford and a couple of runs by him as well, the Warriors faced fourth down at the 6. Rheinford would lead E-W with 78 yards rushing and add 51 yards receiving. “He’s just physical, he just keeps coming,” said Rosenbach. Rheinford was stopped for no gain and it was back to Glacier Peak with the ball.

This time Glacier Peak had some success advancing toward mid-field before a fumble, recovered by Isaiah Salud, gave the ball back to the Warriors. E-W would only go nine yards in four plays, turning the ball back to Glacier Peak. After two passes, one to Lyle Umperovitch for seven and another to Guffey for 16, the Grizzlies sent out Pettit with the clock at 7 seconds. With the Warriors’ Chantz Justice waiting under the goal post for what surely would be short kick, Pettit defied the odds and sailed it just over the crossbar for the 3-0 half-time lead.

The second half was much more fruitful for both sides. Jalen Nash took the second-half kickoff back to the 40. After two no gains, Morales found Hohengarten for a 20-yard pass down the sideline and again, the Grizzlies were called for a late hit, moving it to the 25. After a couple of Rheinford runs, Nick Venema punched it in from the 4 for the touchdown and a 7-3 lead.

On the ensuing kick-off, the Grizzlies muffed the return and Warrior kicker Brandon Davis recovered the ball — and E-W was back in business. Five plays later, Morales found Nash on a crossing route and the sophomore would do the rest, running in for the 18-yard score.

Glacier Peak came back fairly quickly. After returning the kick to the 45, McCoy found Guffey four times, the last of which being a 3rd down completion for 18 yards and a score. With 3:08 left in the third quarter, it was now a 14-10 game.

Jatta gave E-W excellent field position, returning the kick to E-W 38. On the next play from scrimmage, Rheinford ran for 5 and had 15 added on for helmet-to-helmet contact. The Warriors then began to go backwards, getting sacked and being called for holding, forcing them to punt.

Glacier Peak started the final period on its own 28. Lain Black, the Grizzlies’ leading rusher on the night, would run for 27 yards on the next five carries. The Warriors almost intercepted the sixth play of the drive, but instead, following another Black run, saw yet another near pick deflect into the hands of a waiting Guffey, who waltzed into the end zone, giving the Grizzlies a 17-14 lead.

The Warriors settled for a field goal on their next possession and after both teams failed to mount much of a drive, the Grizzlies got the ball back, setting up Pettit for the game winner.

“It was a good game, back-and-forth, for both teams,” said Warriors head coach John Gradwohl. “The kids played and fought and fought. It is what it is.”

With the win, the Grizzlies (4-2, 4-3) go on to face Arlington in a playoff game Friday. The Warriors (3-3, 4-4) will have one more game against a yet-to-be-determined opponent.

G-P 0 3 7 10 20
E-W 0 0 14 3 17
1st quarter
2nd quarter
G/P 0:00 Spencer Pettit 56 yard FG
3rd quarter
E/W 9:06 Nick Venema 4 yard run (Ebrima Fatty kick)
E/W 6:37 Jalen Nash 18 yard pass from Morales (Fatty kick)
G/P 3:07 Justin Guffey 18 yard pass from Brady Southard
4th quarter
G/P 8:34 Guffey 18 yard pass from Southard
E/W 6:15 Fatty 20 yard FG
G/P 0:01 Pettit 45 yard FG

— By Jeff Smarr

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