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There's no slowing down the Bowmen

No. 2-ranked Sherwood stays unbeaten by rolling to a 41-18 win over No. 3 Mountain View
by: DAN BROOD AJ’S TD — Sherwood High School senior A.J. Spencer sprints into the end zone for the Bowmen’s first touchdown in Friday’s game.

SHERWOOD - The Bowmen were determined.

They weren't going to let anything get in their way.

Not a powerful Mountain View team with revenge on its mind.

Not a super-quick deficit.

Nope. Nothing.

Sherwood, after surrendering a touchdown to Mountain View on the opening play of the game, roared back to score a 41-18 win over the Cougars in a non-league football showdown played Friday at Sherwood High.

'This was an extremely big game for us,' said Sherwood senior halfback/linebacker Paul Dodson, who had 161 yards of offense and three touchdowns in the victory. 'We faced them last year (a 42-22 Bowmen victory in the Class 5A state semifinals), so it was exciting to beat them with a big score.'

Mountain View, which entered the game ranked No. 3 in the Associated Press Class 5A poll, moved to 2-1.

Sherwood, which entered the game ranked No. 2, improved to 3-0 on the season. The Bowmen also hoped that the decisive win would serve notice that they are in a position to make a run at a possible second straight Class 5A state title.

'Everyone was waiting for last year's team to come through here,' Sherwood senior halfback/safety A.J. Spencer said. 'But we've been playing together since we were in third grade. This is our year.'

'This win was huge for us,' Sherwood senior halfback/linebacker Connor Munro said. 'We wanted to make a statement. We're ready to go for another championship. We just need to keep playing Bowmen football.'

But Sherwood, playing its brand of Bowmen football, had to rally from an early deficit in Friday's game, as Mountain View senior Cody Hollister returned the opening kickoff 90 yards for a touchdown, giving the Cougars a 7-0 lead just 12 seconds into the game.

'That didn't worry us at all,' Spencer said. 'We know we can take care of adversity. We just had to come back and score.'

'We got punched in the face, and we knew we had to punch back - not literally,' Munro said. 'We just stayed calm.'

Sherwood quickly answered back with a 10-play, 60-yard scoring drive the first time it had the ball. Spencer, who battled injuries throughout his junior year, capped off the drive with a 3-yard touchdown run around right end, tying the game at 7-7 with 7:33 left in the first quarter.

'That was my first touchdown in three years,' Spencer said with a smile. 'That felt great. Oh yeah, there's not a better feeling.'

'That was a great answer following their touchdown,' Sherwood coach Greg Lawrence said.

Mountain View regained the lead, at 10-7, when junior Bryce Tipton booted a 28-yard field goal with 2:16 left in the first quarter.

Sherwood again answered, getting a 21-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Dusty Crabtree to Dodson, who made a reaching, finger-tip catch in the back right corner of the end zone, giving the Bowmen a 14-10 lead with 26.7 seconds left in the opening period.

'I usually don't catch the ball in practice,' Dodson said. 'I think that had a lot of people smiling at me.'

Sherwood kept rolling from there. Dodson scored on a 1-yard run with 4:46 left in the second quarter to give the Bowmen a 20-10 halftime lead.

Dodson reached the end zone again in the third quarter, taking a shuffle pass from Crabtree and turning it into a 45-yard touchdown pass play to up the margin to 27-10 with 6:01 left in the period.

'Those felt great,' Dodson said of his three touchdowns. 'But I was doing it all for the team.'

Spencer had a thunderous downfield block on the play to help spring Dodson for his third TD of the game.

'I tried to time it right,' Spencer said of the block that drew oohs and ahhs from the Sherwood crowd. 'I think that felt a bit better than the touchdown.'

The Bowmen got a 1-yard TD blast by senior fullback Travis Dyer and a 28-yard catch and run by Munro on another shuffle pass play form Crabtree for a score to up the lead to 41-10 with 9:02 left to play.

Mountain View put together a 70-yard touchdown drive against Sherwood reserves, getting a 2-yard touchdown run by senior Dimitri Dillard with 2:54 remaining to make the final 41-18.

'That was a very impressive win,' Lawrence said. 'The defense was outstanding. I was proud of the whole effort.'

'They were a good team, but we just had to execute,' Munro said. 'I'm proud of my guys. We did what we worked on.'

'We couldn't ask for much more,' Spencer said. 'It was a privilege to play those guys. You don't get the opportunity a lot to be in a game with No. 2 vs. No. 3.'

Dodson had a big game on offense for the Bowmen. He rushed for 65 yards on five carries and he had three receptions for 96 yards.

'Paul Dodson played an outstanding game,' Lawrence said. 'He made some terrific catches and he's hard to bring down.'

Dyer was Sherwood's top rusher in the game with 82 yards on 14 carries. The Bowmen, as a team, ran for 214 yards on 37 carries.

'The offensive line did great,' Dodson said of the group that included center Nick Rowlands, guards Brandon Whitely and Bryan Van Orman and tackles Andrew Hennings and John Powers, among others. 'They all took care of their responsibilities and did well.'

Crabtree completed five of seven pass attempts for 125 yards.

On defense, Sherwood held Mountain View to 179 yards of total offense, with 70 of those yards coming on the Cougars' late scoring drive.

Dodson, senior Cody Setere and senior Dylan Flannery each had a quarterback sack for the Bowmen. Dyer, Powers and Rowlands each had a tackle for a loss and seniors Danny Rice and Chase Krieger each had a fumble recovery.

For Mountain View, Dillard rushed for 79 yards on 16 carries. Senior quarterback Jacob Hollister completed four of 11 passes for 39 yards.

Both teams will be back in action Friday. Mountain View will host South Salem at 7 p.m. and Sherwood jumps back into Northwest Oregon Conference play when it travels to St. Helens for a 7 p.m. contest.

St. Helens is 2-1 on the season and 1-0 in NWOC play.