Victory tastes so good for Green team
TIGARD — Saturday's Tigard Chicken and Bean Bowl included, well, a bit of everything.
Of course, there were many big plays and hard hits, but there was more.
There was a 300-plus pound lineman getting the ball on a hook-and-ladder play.
There was a running back so speedy that he literally ran out of his shoe.
There was a Tiger star sprinting — backwards — into the end zone for a touchdown.
There was a dramatic finish.
And, for the Green team, there was a chicken dinner, with all the fixings, to enjoy after it was all done.
The Green squad claimed the right to enjoy a chicken dinner, as it scored a 34-30 win over the White team in the ninth-annual Tigard Chicken and Bean Bowl, an intrasquad game played Saturday at Tigard High School.
With the victory, players on the Green team got to eat a postgame chicken dinner, complete with all of the fixings. The White team's postgame meal consisted of just beans.
"Oh yeah, it will taste good," said Tigard senior-to-be Jakob Harrold, a receiver for the Green team, who had a pair of long touchdown receptions in the win. "I loved it. It was exciting."
"The Green team always gets chicken," said Tigard senior-to-be Braden Lenzy, who now has gotten to enjoy a chicken dinner following all three of the Chicken and Bean Bowl games he has played in. "Oh yeah, getting the win was important and we had a lot of fun."
But, maybe more important than the chicken dinner, was the spirited play by both teams in Saturday's game, which wrapped up nearly two weeks of spring practice. That looked to be a positive sign for the Tigers, who will be looking to replace some talented graduated seniors from last fall's squad that reached the semifinal round of last year's Class 6A state playoffs.
"We're looking good," Harrold said. "I think we have the potential to be something great. The work ethic is there."
"We have the capability to be just as good as every other great Tigard team," said Lenzy, a University of Oregon commit, who had 261 yards from scrimmage in Saturday's game. "Coach (Craig) Ruecker always does a great job, and our quarterbacks are developing."
"We have a lot of talent, and we're all working hard," said Tigard senior-to-be Brent Flores, who played at receiver for the White team in Saturday's game. "We've been working hard, and we see it every day."
The big plays happened early and often in the Chicken and Bean Bowl, where each team was given 30 offensive plays to make things happen.
The Green team, in the first possession of the game, got a 28-yard touchdown pass from junior-to-be quarterback Carson Crist to Lenzy. Senior-to-be Trevor Moler added the two-point conversion run to give the Green squad a quick 8-0 lead.
But, on the very next play from scrimmage, White junior-to-be running back Malcolm Stockdale sprinted 70 yards, getting a big block downfield from senior-to-be receiver Nick Heinke, for a touchdown. A two-point conversion pass from senior-to-be Michael Quintana to junior-to-be tight end Noah Jackman tied the game at 8-8.
The Green team answered right back, getting a 66-yard touchdown pass from Crist to Harrold down the right sideline. The conversion run failed, leaving the Green squad with a 14-8 advantage.
On the next White possession, Stockdale showed his big-play abilities, as he reeled off a 42-yard run, despite running out of his left shoe after getting the ball.
On the very next play, senior-to-be Jake Leavitt powered his way into the end zone from eight yards out. Another two-point conversion pass from Quintana to Jackman gave the White squad a 16-14 lead.
The Green team quickly regained the lead, at 22-16, when Crist threw a 53-yard touchdown pass to Harrold, who made a leaping catch before sprinting into the end zone.
After scoring, Harrold let Green center Hayden McDonald spike the ball.
"He came up and wanted the ball," Harrold said. "It was good. Those guys don't get a chance to do that."
Again, the White team answered back. A 44-yard pass from Quintana to Heinke set up Quintana's 8-yard TD run on a scramble. Leavitt's two-point conversion run gave the White squad a 24-22 lead.
But that lead was short-lived, as Crist and Lenzy teamed up on a 70-yard touchdown pass play, with Lenzy sprinting backwards the final 15 yards, into the end zone to give the Green team a 28-24 advantage.
"I was trying to think of a celebration, but I couldn't come up with one," Lenzy said with a smile. "It's just something that happened in the moment."
The White team came back with a long drive, which featured a 15-yard pass from Quintana to Heinke and a 13-yard run by Leavitt. But, the biggest (literally) play of the drive happened when senior-to-be lineman Burke Albaugh got the ball on a hook-and-ladder pass play, and rumbled all the way down to the 2-yard line, before fumbling out of bounds on a hard hit by Green linebacker Jacob Beck.
Three plays later, on its final offensive play of the game, Leavitt scored on a 2-yard run to give the White team a 30-28 lead.
The Green team, with its play limit running down, had one last chance. And the team looked to have its back to the way, facing a third-and-35 play from its own 5-yard line. But a 43-yard pass from Crist to Lenzy got the Green squad out of the hole.
From there, a 13-yard run by senior-to-be Spencer Smith and a 19-yard Crist-to-Lenzy pass moved the ball to the White 4-yard line, where the Green had just two plays remaining.
But it only needed one.
Smith, on the next play, ran four yards around the left end for a touchdown, giving the Green team a 34-30 win — and a complete chicken dinner.
"It was good. We got to see who came to play," Harrold said. "The whole team competed. There were some good hits out there."
"It was weird, being called a senior," said Lenzy, who has played on the Tigard varsity ever since he was a freshman. "But it was really cool."
Lenzy, for the contest, had five catches for 177 yards and he ran the ball twice for 84 yards. Harrold had two receptions for 119 yards.
"It was fun seeing Jakob show what he can do," Lenzy said. "He's going to be really good."
Crist completed seven of 12 pass attempts for 296 yards and four touchdowns. Smith ran for 40 yards on nine carries.
For the White team, Stockdale rushed for 118 yards on just five carries. Leavitt added 47 yards on seven carries.
Quintana completed seven of 11 passes for 90 yards. Heinke had two catches for 59 yards and Flores had two catches for 18 yards. Junior-to-be Mitchell Cross had a pair of tackles for losses.
"I think we all did pretty good," Flores said. "It was a good game, and everyone competed. But, now we're just one team."
Tigard will open the 2017 season on Sept. 1, when it plays at Jesuit in a non-league game.