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Cats hold off game Beavers

No. 4 Westview stays unbeaten by taking out Beaverton 21-14 Friday
by: MILES VANCE, WRAPPED UP — Westview’s Brent Hubbard puts the squeeze on Beaverton’s Joel Gross on Friday night.

ROCK CREEK - Westview High has had some pretty darn good football teams during its 14-year history, but the 2006 version of the Wildcats is poised to go where no Westview team has gone before.

The fourth-ranked Wildcats improved to 6-0 (2-0 in Metro League play) for just the second time in school history on Friday by beating Beaverton 21-14 at Westview High School, in the process notching their first win over the Beavers since 1998 and also going 6-0 for the first time in the past eight years. The Beavers fell to 0-2 in league and 2-4 overall.

'We didn't let it get in our heads (but) we just wanted to mark our place in history,' said Westview sophomore quarterback Josh Hill, who ran for 46 yards and a touchdown and passed for 97 yards and two more scores. 'We made some mistakes the first half ... but once we focused and did our stuff, our defense stepped up tonight.'

'The offense had some trouble moving the ball today, but the defense made it up and always got the ball when we needed to to get the 'W,'' said Westview senior linebacker Yong-Suk Choi, who made two of his team's three interceptions against Beaverton on Friday. 'Our defense did a great job today.'

Indeed. The Wildcat defense was tough as nails all night on Friday, holding Beaverton to just 159 yards in total offense and stuffing the Beaver running game to the tune of minus-18 yards on 27 tries.

While Beaverton struggled to run the football, the Beavers passed for 177 yards and were still alive until their final drive was stopped by a Spencer Arns interception at the Westview 21-yard line with just 46 seconds left in the contest.

'A lot of people really didn't think we were going to come out and do anything. It was just going to be a rollover game for us,' said Beaverton senior wide receiver David Mabry, who led his team with 70 yards on four catches. 'But we knew we could play with them.'

'They came in here knowing they could compete with this team and the sad thing is, as we're leaving, knowing we could compete with this team,' added Beaverton coach Bob Boyer. 'We were just a step short or a block shy of making something big happen.'

Westview started quickly on Friday, stopping Beaverton's first possession on four downs, getting a blocked punt by Arns and coming back to score in less than a minute. After Westview took over at the Beaver 16-yard line, Kaale Papas ran for four yards, Hill scrambled right for eight more, and on first down at the 4-yard line, Hill ran right then reversed field and dove into the end zone to score. Josh Parshall added the first of three extra points for a 7-0 lead.

Beaverton bounced back on its ensuing possession to tie the game, marching 71 yards in five plays to score. The drive was highlighted by two big Westview penalties, a juggling catch by Mabry for 37 yards, and a 7-yard Austin Potter-to-Tyler McBee TD Pass. Gordo Izquierdo added the first of two PATs to make it 7-7 midway through the first quarter.

The Wildcats re-took the lead less than five minutes later with a 64-yard scoring drive, a drive in which Hill completed 5-of-6 passes for 40 yards, the capper a 13-yard Hill TD pass to Daniel Wells with 1:53 remaining in the opening quarter.

Beaverton came up empty on its next two series, but the Beavers' defense stepped to the fore, created a very big turnover and kept their upset hopes alive. With Westview operating from its own 30-yard line, Hill threw to Andrew Jones near the right sideline, but Jones was hit by Beaverton's Ryan Fullmer, fumbled and Beaver senior Neil Fiegenbaum scooped the ball up and raced 28 yards to score and tie the game 14-14 with 7 minutes left in the half.

Undeterred, Westview bounced right back with its third score, this time driving 64 yards in six plays, with 46 yards coming on two Hill completions to Jones. The capper was a 22-yard pass to Jones in the front right corner of the end zone where Jones made a fingertip catch while straddling the sideline to score.

And there, at 21-14, is where the score stayed the rest of the night, though the second half provided plenty of thrills short. In those final two quarters, Westview and Beaverton teamed for six turnovers - including three interceptions (two by Choi, the other by Beaverton's Nieco Biggi) in four plays in a span of just 54 seconds and turnovers on four straight possessions in the third quarter.

'I saw Bob (Boyer) after the game and said 'That was real sloppy,'' said Westview coach Jon Evans. 'There was some officiating I couldn't understand - but that you can't control. Turnovers you can control.'

'There were just missed opportunities and mistakes,' Boyer said. 'It would have been nice to get a couple great plays to finish it.'

Amid all the turnovers, there were a couple notable scoring opportunities that went by the boards, including a Beaver drive that spanned 8:47 before sputtering out at the Westview 26, and a Wildcat possession that fell apart when Hill fumbled the ball away to Beaverton's Devin Fitzpatrick at the Beaver 2-yard line.

For the game, Papas led Westview with 70 yards on 10 carries and Jones had 63 yards on five catches. For Beaverton, Potter hit on 13-of-24 passes for 157 yards but was intercepted three times.