Wolves bounce back and blast Glencoe
Football: Tualatin, looking to rebound after losing to Tigard, rolls to a 44-7 win
HILLSBORO - Motivation.
The Tualatin High School football team seemed to be overflowing with both last Thursday.
And that certainly proved to be enough to overwhelm Glencoe.
The Wolves, looking to bounce back strong after suffering a stinging 35-7 loss to rival Tigard last week, rebounded in a big way, scoring a dominating 44-7 win over the Crimson Tide in a Pacific Conference game played at Hare Field.
'This is huge,' said Tualatin senior quarterback Travis Johnson, who passed for 188 yards and three touchdowns in the victory. 'Last week was tough. But this whole week we focused on basics. We had a lot of good senior leadership. This was definitely important. It's great for our confidence and we're feeling positive now.'
'We got our confidence back,' Tualatin senior linebacker Brandon Durdel said. 'We used last week as motivation. We were determined and we wanted to come out and have our best week, all week.'
With the loss, Glencoe fell to 2-3 in league play and to 2-5 on the season. Tualatin improved to 4-1 in Pacific Conference games and to 5-2 on the season. With the win, combined with Century's 21-14 loss at Forest Grove, the Wolves are now all alone in second place in the league standings.
'This was very important,' Tualatin junior lineman Cody Summers said. 'We didn't feel good about how we played last week, so this game was vital. This was a great step for us.'
The focused Timberwolves wasted little time in taking charge in Thursday's game in Hillsboro. In their first possession, they marched 46 yards in nine plays before having to settle for a 33-yard field goal by senior Nathan Suyematsu (his seventh three-pointer of the season) to take a 3-0 lead with 7 minutes and 5 seconds left in the first quarter.
But Tualatin would do very little settling after that.
The Wolves upped their lead to 10-0 when Johnson completed a 24-yard touchdown pass to Suyematsu with 6:21 left in the second quarter.
Tualatin got the ball right back as Timberwolf senior linebacker Alex Fonseca recovered a fumble on Glencoe's ensuing possession at the Crimson Tide 38-yard line. From there, a 10-yard scramble by Johnson helped set up a 23-yard touchdown run by junior Zach Salton. The TD pushed the Tualatin lead to 17-0 with 3:20 left in the first half.
The Wolves weren't done with their first-half fireworks there. They took over the ball on their own 19-yard line following a Glencoe punt with 55 seconds left before halftime. An 11-yard run by Johnson and a 23-yard pass from Johnson to Salton helped move the ball to the Glencoe 40-yard line, but there were only four seconds left in the half at that point.
But that proved to be enough.
On the next play, Johnson found Suyematsu open as he cut from the right side of the field to the middle. Suyematsu grabbed the pass and sprinted into the end zone for a touchdown that gave Tualatin a 24-0 lead at the intermission.
'It was a simple crossing pattern,' Johnson said. 'Nathan put a hand up and I threw the ball up there and let him go get it.'
Tualatin's momentum immediately carried over to the third quarter, as Timberwolf senior Aireon Tavarres recovered a Glencoe fumble on the second-half kickoff. Three plays later, Tualatin senior Brady Watts powered his way into the end zone from two yards out, making the score 30-0 with 10:41 left in the third quarter.
Tualatin pushed the margin to 37-0 when Johnson found senior receiver Kevin MacPherson wide open down the left sideline for a 40-yard TD pass play coming with 6:48 left in the third quarter.
Glencoe got on the scoreboard with a 36-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Logan VanRoekel to senior receiver Shane O'Rourke with 3:15 left in the third period.
Tualatin capped off the scoring with a 1-yard touchdown run by junior Tyler Kemp coming with 1:37 left in the contest, wrapping up the 44-7 victory.
'This was real important for us,' Tualatin coach Rob Hastin said. 'And we did this tonight as a team. We had the opportunity to refocus ourselves this week, and we came out with a lot of energy and enthusiasm. We're excited for the rest of the season.'
'We spent all week working our butts off for this,' Summers said. 'This was a big one for us.'
Tualatin, as a team, had 449 yards of total offense in the win.
'The line was amazing all night,' Johnson said of the group that included center Will Chapman, guards Brennen McCullough and Michael Butz and tackles Summers and Travis Campbell, among others. 'The holes were huge.'
'The coaches really helped us,' Summers said. 'We showed great improvement all week.'
Johnson had a big game for the Wolves. In the victory, he completed nine of 12 pass attempts for 188 yards and three touchdowns while also rushing for 30 yards.
'Travis is showing a lot of poise and maturity out there,' Hastin said.
Watts paced the Wolves' rushing attack with 16 carries for 118 yards. He rushed for 107 yards on 14 carries in Tualatin's big first half. Suyematsu had three catches for 82 yards while Tavarres, MacPherson, Salton and senior Sumner Patton had two catches apiece.
The Tualatin defense limited Glencoe to just 196 yards of total offense.
'We just wanted to come out and hit,' Durdel said. 'We wanted to show that we're still a good defense.'
For the Timberwolf defense, junior lineman Dane Simonsen had an interception of a screen pass and he also batted down another pass at the line of scrimmage. Fonseca and Tavarres each had a fumble recovery and junior Jeffrey Williams, Durdel, junior Austin Green, sophomore Ryan Wisner, sophomore Connor McCullough and sophomore Tyler Mitchell each had a tackle for a loss.
For Glencoe, junior Ryan Spaulding rushed for 102 yards on 21 carries. VanRoekel completed six of 12 passes for 58 yards.
Both teams will be back in action Friday. Tualatin will host Forest Grove and Glencoe will play Century at Hillsboro Stadium. Both of those games are set to start at 7 p.m.