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The homecoming game featured a stellar performance by Luke McNabb and his teammates.

COURTESY PHOTO: JOSI WELTER - Scappoose Indians in a defensive lineup, featuring players Joey Botsford, Riley Gibson and Austin Verbout.The Scappoose Indians once again relied on the strong throwing arm of quarterback Luke McNabb in securing a 56-14 victory over the visiting St. Helens Lions Friday, Oct. 29, on homecoming night.

McNabb ran for a pair of touchdowns while throwing three touchdown passes in the game, earning the Indians a playoff matchup at West Albany on Friday, Nov. 5, in the first round of the playoffs, which is a 16-team bracket.

D'Angelo Macedo-Becker, Warren Haatia and Austin Verbout each ran for touchdowns, as did Malcolm Harrison, Colby Campbell and Ben Rintoul.

McNabb connected with Colby Campbell right out of the gate, then made his second touchdown pass of the night to Malcolm Harrison.

For St. Helens, Tyler Tolles and Mason Stroud scored touchdowns.

Coach Sean McNabb was happy to grab the victory.

"There was a lot of excitement, the buildup to it, having your crosstown rivals on a homecoming night," McNabb said. "It was a crisp, clear night. It was just a great week."

McNabb continued, "It was a much-needed win for us to be able to get into the round of 16. We had to keep our fingers crossed. It worked out. We get a chance to play another week."

McNabb looks ahead to the contest against West Albany, which kicks off at 7 p.m. Friday.

"They have a strong tradition," McNabb said. "They've always had a good football team down there. Over the years, they've always been in the playoff hunt. They have been to the state championship game before."

McNabb continued, "We have zero history with them. We've only been up at this classification for a few years, so there are a lot of teams that we haven't had a chance to play, and they're one of them. They are the No. 3 seed going into this and we're the No. 14 seed, so we're definitely the underdog going into this."

Noting that West Albany has a lot of tradition and a much larger school than Scappoose, McNabb said, "We're excited about the opportunity. I know our guys are going to go out and have a great week. We're just going to roll the dice and get after them on Friday."

Anticipating Friday's showdown with West Albany, McNabb said, "We're excited about being in the postseason. For a moment there, when we lost to North Salem 35-34, that took us out of that automatic berth because the top three teams make it in. We had to have a little bit of luck, and we had to beat St. Helens. Again, it's an exciting opportunity and we're going to make the most of it."

The Scappoose Indians finish the season with a 5-4 record, including league and non-league games. St. Helens suffered through three forfeits and was able to secure one non-league win on Sept. 3, against LaSalle Prep, 28-6.

St. Helens High football coach Cory Young remained optimistic, despite the losing season.

"We had some missed opportunities on some plays, on some drives," Young said. "At times, our physicality increased. We looked really good. Scappoose is a good football team. They are going to the playoffs.

"Defensively, big plays hurt us. We had a lot of sophomores on the field at the end of the game. They were in a tough spot, (but) they were scrapping and making themselves better football players."

McNabb was happy with Friday's attendance.

"It's always a big game in Columbia County," McNabb said, fitting for a contest that once went by the nickname "the 7-Mile War."

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