Indians round up a win early against Wilson
SCAPPOOSE — The countdown to the postseason started Friday night as the Scappoose Indians counted the minutes till homecoming and then counted out the Wilson Trojans early in their Class 5A Special District 1 football game.
Scappoose scored three touchdowns in each of the first two quarters for a 41-0 lead, then made the rest of the game play under a running clock by scoring a touchdown 2:49 into the third quarter.
The final score was 48-13 for the Indians, who succeeded in bouncing back from a 50-14 loss the previous week to Wilsonville.
Scappoose is second in league losses (one) behind the Wildcats in the West Division and will look to add to its momentum next Friday, when it plays host to Cleveland in the final regular-season game before District 1 divisional crossover week.
"We did some good things," Scappoose coach Sean McNabb said. "We really focused this week on really picking up the competitiveness in practice and on a better effort."
Senior quarterback Jakobi Kessi led the attack against Wilson, passing for two touchdowns and running for another.
"Our coaching staff did a really good job of getting us prepared, like they do every week, and this week we really took it to heart," Kessi said. "We were all over the place Wilsonville week — I don't know what was going through our heads. It was definitely a mental game, and we didn't play our best.
"But this week we were dialed in. We were ready to go."
The Indians welcomed back senior running back Josh Rice, the transfer from Vernonia who was off to a solid start in 5A ball before suffering a dislocated elbow and torn tendons Sept. 20 against Hillsboro.
The Indians were 3-0 when Rice went down, and he missed three games, including the losses to Pendleton and Wilsonville.
He barged 5 yards Friday night for Scappoose's second touchdown and added a 4-yard run with three seconds left in the first half, sharing the ball-carrying duties with various other Indians.
"It was a long three weeks — torture," Rice said. "It feels great. I don't really think about (the elbow) when I'm playing. I had a lot of pent-up energy."
Junior Deacon Smith also ran for a touchdown, scoring from 16 yards on the final play of the first quarter.
"This whole week in practice, we felt amazing," Smith said of the Indians, "and that just played into the game. … I knew the gaps were open because of our O-line."
And senior Kawkia Napaa ran 1 yard for the Indians' final touchdown.
Scappoose's scoring drives, in order, covered 19 yards in four plays after a fumble recovery by senior Connor Maclachlan; 39 yards in seven plays after a fourth-down stop; 80 yards in five plays after senior Drake Kramer's interception; 40 yards in two plays after another stop by the defense; 50 yards in five plays; 65 yards in five plays after a pick by senior Blake Morkert; and 40 yards in five plays to open the second half.
Scappoose, which was ranked 10th in 5A this week, raised its record to 5-2 overall, 4-1 in league.
Kessi and the Indians came out focused and determined. The QB credited his offensive line for its pass protection and run blocking, and when he needed to, he was able to buy time behind the line of scrimmage and then either make a throw or take off for some big gainers.
"Our offensive line did really, really well. I had times when I didn't feel like anybody could touch me," Kessi said. "They're the heart of our team. They kill it every week. They don't get enough credit."
The first touchdown was an example of that, as he rolled left out of the pocket and then found junior wide receiver Logan Johnson in the end zone for a 10-yard TD pass.
"It was a broken play, and Jakobi was scrambling, and I just went across the field and to the back of the end zone and found a spot to sit, and he threw a good pass," Johnson said.
Rice powered his way up the middle for the 14-0 lead.
"That guy's a workhorse," Kessi said. "It's extremely beneficial to have him back. We have a really good corps of running backs. We like to rotate them a lot, because we have that luxury. They're all hard runners, big guys with speed, and they make it work."
On Scappoose's third possession, Smith ripped off a 49-yard run that set up his touchdown burst.
The two-play touchdown drive consisted of a 28-yard pass from Kessi to senior Colton Frates, followed by Kessi's 12-yard scramble to the end zone
Kessi also had a 29-yard run to the Wilson 9 that set up touchdown No. 5 — which came on the QB's 10-yard pass play to Kramer.
"Drake ran a great route getting open and avoiding the linebackers," Kessi said.
Kessi ran 43 yards late in the second quarter as the Indians went 65 yards in 57 seconds and scored on Rice's 4-yard run just before halftime.
Kessi threw to Maclachan for 24 yards to get Scappoose to the Trojans' 1, and Nappa did the rest for a 48-0 lead.
Wilson (0-7, 0-5 in the division) got on the board on the final play of the third quarter, with senior wide receiver JayShaunn Avritt sprinting down the left sideline and catching a pass from senior QB Hunter Davis for what turned into a 93-yard play.
The Trojans also scored on the last play of the game. Davis connected with Avritt again, this time in the end zone and for 28 yards.
"We're going to finish up the regular season and shoot ourselves into the playoffs," Rice said. "I feel like we're going to play really well the rest of the season."
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