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Horizon Christian clinches state football berth

Football: The Hawks roll to a 40-0 win over Sheridan

TUALATIN - In a game dominated by the weather as much as any individual player, the Horizon Christian Hawks shutout the Sheridan Spartans by a 40-0 margin in a West Valley League football game played Friday at Horizon Christian High School.

With the win, Horizon Christian (6-2, 4-1 league) locked up second place in the West Valley League and a spot in the Class 3A state playoffs. Sheridan made the playoffs the last two years on the strength of the prior senior class, but the Spartans are struggling this year, falling to 0-8 on the season with the loss.

The rain and strong winds helped Horizon dominate the game and take a 27-0 lead in the first quarter. First, Sheridan fumbled the opening kickoff and the Hawks recovered at the Sheridan 36. The Hawks struck quickly, as junior Taylor Grimmett scored from 22 yards out on the second play from scrimmage, the first of three touchdowns on the night for Grimmett.

The next Hawk score was weather assisted as well, as Horizon sophomore Brian Satterwhite sacked the Sheridan punter after a fumbled snap, giving the Hawks the ball at the Sheridan 10-yard line. Junior QB Wyatt Houston hit junior Zack Selland for the touchdown on the next play, giving the Hawks a 14-0 lead at the 9:13 mark of the first quarter.

The 'weird weather play of the night' came on Sheridan's next possession when it was forced to punt from its own 23-yard line. The punter lined up about 10 yards deep, handled the snap and avoided pressure to get the kick off, but the wind took over - the ball initially flew forward, but the wind caught the ball, carrying it backwards and towards the far sideline. The ball landed inside the 15-yard line and bounded towards the end zone - Hawk sophomore Devyn Cardoza picked up the loose ball and ran it back seven yards for the TD.

The Hawks defense forced Sheridan to punt after another 'three and out' on the next series, and although the punt did go forward, it was still held up by the wind, leaving the Hawks inside the 30-yard line.

Horizon sophomore Mychal Makarowsky scored on a 21-yard run a few plays later, giving Horizon a 27-0 lead with 4:53 left in the first quarter, even though the Hawks had only run six offensive plays and possessed the ball for less than two minutes.

With the game in hand, the Hawks moved Wyatt Houston to tight end and gave Selland, the backup QB, significant game time running the offense. Late in the second quarter, Selland marched the Hawks downfield on a 13-play, six-minute drive consisting primarily of Grimmett runs and passes to Houston. Grimmett scored the touchdown on a 4-yard run on the last play of the first half, giving Horizon a 33-0 halftime lead.

Grimmett scored his final touchdown on a 4-yard run on the opening drive of the third quarter, and added his fourth extra point of the game to extend the Hawks lead to 40-0. Grimmett led all rushers with a season-high 148 yards on 18 carries. Selland completed five of seven passes during the game with Houston as his favorite target, catching three passes for 42 yards.

The Hawks finish the regular season with a road game against the Amity Warriors this Friday. The following week, the Hawks will likely have a home game in the first round of the state playoffs.