PORT ANGELES — What we learned this week about prep football is that truly good teams are flexing their muscles and proving particularly tough to beat on the road.
Olympic, rising as a power in the Olympic League’s Class 2A Division, handled Port Angeles 48-14 at home, while Naselle, likely the premier 1B football team west of the Cascades, showed Neah Bay that the Comets are still the team to beat this side of Odessa in a 50-14 home win.
Meanwhile, Forks had hopes against Montesano, one of the best 1A teams in the state and an Evergreen League 1A title contender, but the Bulldogs showed the upstart Spartans they are still the power of the Evergreen 1A in a 41-6 win.
That actually was a good performance by the Forks defense. Montensano came in to Friday’s game averaging 59.5 points a game and that 41-point game was their lowest scoring output of the season.
Charles Wright is another new power rising in the Nisqually League. The Tarriers showed they are real by coming into to Memorial Stadium and beating a Cowboys team 49-0 that was coming off a win. Charles Wright is not a year-after-year power in the Nisqually, but every few seasons they put it together and it appears the undefeated Tarriers are going to give Cascade Christian a run for its money this year.
Though we’ve barely hit midseason, the North Olympic Peninsula already has three 1,000-yard rushers.
Quilcene’s Bishop Budnek had a 421-yard performance in the Rangers’ win over Rainier Christian to go to 1,090 yards on the season.
Clallam Bay’s Ryan Strid gained 398 yards against Lake Quinault to go to an astounding 1,400 yards rushing in just three six-man games.
(Strid had a 500-yard game earlier this season).
And Neah Bay’s Tobias Croy is also over 1,000 yards after a road loss to Naselle. However, Croy has had games of 344, 276 and 296 yards in three wins this year.
The Peninsula has some serious running games. Sequim’s Walker Ward, who gained 181 yards against Kingston, has 552 yards rushing himself, with a legitimate shot at 1,000 yards going up against tough 2A defenses.
Port Townsend senior running back Dylan Tracer also has a shot at breaking the 1,000-yard barrier as the tough-running Tracer is at 427 yards through four games.
Clallam Bay has a team!
Boy, do the Bruins have a team. They are 3-0 playing a 6-man schedule against tiny schools. Clallam Bay relies heavily on Strid’s speed (Strid finished third in the 200-yard dash at the state 1B track meet last year and fourth in the 100-yard dash) but they are also getting good quarterback play from Colin Aldana.
It’s been a struggle for Clallam Bay to keep the program going the past few years, so it’s great to see the Bruins thriving this season.
The Redhawks showed they have a legitimate shot at being a playoff team, now that they have Noa Montoya back from a leg injury. They went on the road and thoroughly ruffled Vashon 38-14.
Port Townsend showed that it is another North Olympic team that can run the ball. Tracer and Logan Massie each had 100-yard games and Jerome Reaux Jr. had 71 yards in the Redhawks’ big win. Port Townsend tallied more than 360 yards rushing in the victory.
Sports Editor Pierre LaBossiere can be contacted at 360-417-3525 or [email protected]