Friday's top five: A look at the five biggest football games from Sept. 22
There's no other way to describe it — Friday was wild.
In the Mt. Hood Conference, Clackamas destroyed Central Catholic 40-0 in what was supposed to be a matchup for league supremacy.
In the Three RIvers League, Lakridge had to go into overtime to knock off Sherwood 49-42 and snap a 17-game TRL losing streak.
And in the Northwest Oregon Conference, Sandy muscled past Milwaukie 26-12 after trailing by nine at the half.
With all that going on in Week Four of the 2017 Oregon high school football season, Pamplin Media Group's sports editors, reporters and photographers were out in force to document a bunch of it.
Among the many games covered by Pamplin Media Group's sports editors, reporters and photographers on Friday night, there were some absolutely huge results that will shape the state's power rankings for weeks to come.
In case you may have missed some of these landmark scores, here's a look back at Friday's top five games. You can see all our coverage by clicking on the Prep Football tab — to see it, just hover over the Sports tab — on all our websites.
To see all of Friday's scores, click here.
To see updated league and season standings for all the state's teams click here.
To see Friday's best of the best photo gallery, click here.
To see Friday's Play of the Day compilation, click here.
FRIDAY'S TOP FIVE
Four weeks into the high school football season, there is no question that the Clackamas Cavaliers' high-scoring offense is one of the most dynamic Class 6A offenses in the state.
The offensive line led by senior center Dash Johnson is stellar, quarterback Mitchell Modjeski is a dual threat, tailback Nick Vaughn is a workhorse, and wideouts Braelan Bettles, Aric Bergers and Cole Turner are only the tip of a star-studded receivers corps.
There's also kicker Jeff Nelson, who is as close to automatic as it gets when it comes to kicking PATs and sending kickoffs into the end zone for touchbacks.
But how about that Clackamas defense?
The Cavaliers' offense is exceptional, but the defense is bordering on extraordinary, proving it again Friday night when Clackamas overwhelmed Central Catholic 40-0 and grabbed the early inside track in the Mt. Hood Conference title chase.
The last two winless seasons in the Three Rivers League were hard for the Lakeridge football team.
Dropping 17 straight games in the TRL over parts of four seasons was hard, too.
And playing in the TRL — home of giants such as West Linn, Tigard and Sherwood — has always been hard.
With all that as pretext, it almost makes sense that Friday — the night that Lakeridge broke that hated losing streak — was hard, too.
The Pacers, hosting Sherwood in the second week of the 2017 TRL season — also their Homecoming game — made all those hard times worth the wait, rallying from a two-score deficit to win 49-42 in overtime in front of a raucous Lakeridge crowd.
Sandy's football team silenced the home crowd by erasing a nine-point deficit with a flurry to finish the first half on its way to a 26-12 win at Milwaukie on Friday night.
Sure, the West Linn High School football team is an offensive juggernaut.
That's no secret.
But, guess what? The Lions also can play some really strong defense.
And, on Friday, they really needed that defensive effort.
That's because Tualatin was also playing some hard-hitting, stifling defense.
But it was West Linn, stepping up in a big way on the defensive side of the ball, that came away with a 21-9 win in a Three Rivers League battle played at Tualatin High School.
In a game where both teams combined for 82 points on the night, it was a defensive play down the stretch that made the difference for the Gresham Gophers.
With under two minutes remaining and Centennial driving down the field for the winning score, Gresham defensive back Emijah Flanagan picked off a pass from Centennial's Kaiden Lansford to seal the game as Gresham (3-0, 2-0 MHC) came away with 42-40 victory over Centennial (1-3, 0-2 MHC).