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Lions shock Sherwood for much of first half

St. Helens jumps out to 14-0 lead, but it doesn't last too long
by: Jeremy Dueck FIRST TD—St. Helens’ Dumitri Malnasi scored on this long run to give the Lions the lead against mighty Sherwood.

The St. Helens Lions wanted to make something happen Friday night, and for a while at least they did just that.

St. Helens would take a 14-0 lead over top-ranked, defending state 5A champion Sherwood and stayed in front for quite awhile. The euphoria wouldn't continue and in the end the Lions ended up on the wrong side of a 61-21 score.

'We got off to a good start,' St. Helens coach John England said. 'We jumped on them early. We had an onsides kick with a nice bounce and Michael Kirby jumped on it. We were living on the edge.'

On their second play from scrimmage, the Lions broke loose back Dumitri Malnasi for 48-yards and the score. Eldon Ralls' kick would make it 7-0.

St. Helens didn't expect Sherwood to stumble for long, but when Tyler Stewart sacked their quarterback on the Bowmen's first play hope sprang eternal.

The Bowmen came back to drive down the field, but then fumbled at the St. Helens five, Jerek Pense scooped it up and went 95 yards to the Sherwood four. From there, St. Helens quarterback Dallas Thompson found Stewart for the score. Ralls kicked and it was 14-0.

Sherwood would come back to score in the first quarter and twice in the second for a 20-14 halftime lead.

'It took awhile, but they scored with less than a minute to go in the first quarter. We were still ahead and playing on fire. They had some good running backs, but we were hanging with them. It wasn't perfect, but the kids were doing what we wanted them to,' England added. 'It was pretty exciting up through halftime, even in the second quarter when they caught up.'

The tide turned in the third quarter. The Lions made some mistakes, gave up a safety, and four touchdowns.

'They were playing defense pretty tough (against us),' the coach said, 'but we did throw the ball pretty well for (nearly) 140 yards. We couldn't get our running game established.'

He noted, 'Kirby had a nice recovery and Pense a nice return. Dallas Thompson had a really good game under fire the whole night. Dumitri had a nice run, and Jesse Wright had four catches and a nice touchdown catch. Tyler Stewart did a good job on defense.'

Thompson hit 11 of 24 passes for 136 yards and one interception. Malnasi led the Lions with 13 carries for 68 yards. Defensively, Kirby led the Lions with six tackles and six assists. Stewart had four tackles and six assists.

The Lions travel to Milwaukie this Friday. The Mustangs are 1-3 on the season. They beat Cleveland in their opener 6-0; lost to Wilsonville, 51-6; lost to Liberty, 40-14; and lost to Silverton last Friday, 47-6.

'We should be able to handle Milwaukie,' England said. 'They only won that first week to a week PIL team. They've got some good athletes. We've got to get to them early and keep the pressure from the start. If we let them hang around and play with us it could make for a long night. We need to come together and execute for the full 48 minutes.'

SCORING

Sherwood 7 13 28 13-61

St. Helens 14 0 0 7-21

SH-Dumitri Malnasi 48 yard run (Eldon Ralls kick)

SH-Tyler Stewart 5 yard pass from Dallas Thompson (Ralls kick)

Sh-Paul Dodson 53 yard pass from Dusty Crabtree (Nate Montgomery kick)

Sh-Dodson 45 yard run (Montgomery kick)

Sh-A.J. Spencer 15 yard run (kick failed)

Sh-Safety

Sh-Spencer 86 yard kickoff return (PAT failed)

Sh-Cody Setere 3 yard run (Montgomery kick)

Sh-Dodson 20 yard run (Montgomery kick)

Sh-Anthony Sherwood 5 yard run (PAT failed)

Sh-Caleb Galindo 1 yard run (PAT failed)

SH-Jesse Wright 49 yard pass from Thompson (Ralls kick)

Sh-Keegan Lawrence 27 yard run (Taylor Bonaitz kick)

Next Up

Opponent: Milwaukie Mustangs

Record: 1-3

Last Opponent: lost to Silverton, 47-6.

Ranking: 28th

Offense: Pro-I, shotgun spread

Defense: 3-4

Notable: Defensive strength is interior line

Quote:

'We're ready to get back on the winning track. We've got to get to them early and keep the pressure on from the start.'

-John England