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Lakers overcome early 21-point deficit to beat West Salem

Zach Young leads the way with 234 yards and four TDs
by: Photo by Vern Uyetake, Zach Young heads for the endzone on a 27 yard run late in the game giving the Lakers a 29-28 win over West Salem, Friday night in Lake Oswego. Young finished the night with 234 yards rushing and four touchdowns.

It took him a quarter to warm up but once he got going, Zach Young was nearly impossible to stop.

Playing in his first game as a member of the Lake Oswego football team, Young carried the ball 38 times for 234 yards and four touchdowns. His final score, plus Pat Barry's extra point, which came with three minutes left in the game, was the difference in the Lakers' thrilling 29-28 come-from-behind victory over West Salem on Friday.

The visiting Titans, who are favored to win the Central Valley League this year, jumped to a 21-0 lead after one quarter. It seemed West Salem could do nothing wrong in that period.

Jordan Jenkins, who moved this year from quarterback to running back, ran the ball nine times in that period for 56 yards. And Aaron Hire, who was starting his first game at quarterback, completed 3 of 4 passes in that stanza for 104 yards.

One of those passes turned into a 35-yard touchdown by Chase Sexton, which gave West Salem an early 7-0 lead. A short time later, Jenkins hauled in a short screen pass and rambled 63 yards for another score to make it 14-0.

Lake Oswego's next possession ended with an interception by Steven Ellis, who returned the ball to the Lakers' 11. Four plays later, Jenkins scored on a two-yard plunge and the Titans were ahead 21-0.

But the game belonged to Lake Oswego the rest of the way.

Young got his first score early in the second period on a seven-yard run. But a failed extra point attempt left the Lakers' deficit at 21-6.

Young scored again on Lake Oswego's next possession, this time on a three-run. A missed two-point conversion left the score at 21-12, which is how the game stayed until the final quarter.

Young capped the first drive of that last stanza with a two-yard scoring run and Pat Barry's extra point trimmed West Salem's lead to 21-19.

The Lakers' celebration didn't last long, though, because West Salem's Jordan Bishop returned the ensuing kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown, and the Titans pushed their lead to 28-19.

Lake Oswego followed with one of its longest drives of the game, but the Lakers wound up settling for a 24-yard field goal by Barry, which trimmed West Salem's lead to 28-22.

Then, after a three-and-out se-ries by the Titans, the Lakers needed just three plays to score again. This time, Young found the end zone on a 27-yard run around left end. And Barry's kick gave the Lakers all of the breathing room they needed.

Young, who played at Lakeridge the last three years, was held to just 12 yards in the first quarter. But he broke loose for 99 in the second period, and then added 58 in the third quarter and another 65 in the final stanza.

Jack Lomax, Lake Oswego's first time starter at quarterback, also had a good game. He com-pleted 12 of 19 passes for 128 yards.

For the game, Lake Oswego had a 411-to-242 advantage in total yards. Approximately two-thirds of West Salem's total came in the first period.