Tualatin powers past Westview in Round 1
The Tualatin High School football team didn't exactly have a fantastic start in its state playoff opener.
But the Timberwolves sure did roar to the finish.
Tualatin, after trailing Westview 15-14 at the end of the first quarter, turned on the jets and rolled to a 69-27 win over the Wildcats in a Class 6A state playoff first-round game played Friday at Tualatin High School.
With the loss, Westview, the No. 6 team out of the Metro League, and the No. 26 team in the final OSAA power rankings, finished it season with a final overall record of 2-8. Tualatin, the No. 2 team out of the Three Rivers League, and the No. 7 team in the power rankings, improved to 8-2 with the victory. The Wolves also advance to the second round of the state playoffs, where they'll host North Medford in a game set to start at 7 p.m. Friday at Tualatin High School.
Tualatin, in the playoff opener with Westview, took a 14-7 lead behind touchdown runs by sophomore Malik Ross and senior Kainoa Sayre. But the Wildcats, getting a 10-yard TD pass from junior quarterback Brayden Libby to senior Landon Smalley, followed by a 2-point conversion run by junior Gabe Foster, claimed a 15-14 lead at the end of the first quarter.
But, it was all Tualatin after that.
In the second quarter, the Wolves got a 55-yard touchdown run by Sayre, a 71-yard touchdown run by senior Luke Marion, a 13-yard TD run by Marion, a 28-yard touchdown run by Sayre, a 9-yard touchdown run by sophomore Ethan Mendoza and a 15-yard touchdown pass from senior quarterback Blake Jackson to Ross, giving Tualatin a 55-21 halftime lead.
The Wolves tacked on a 36-yard touchdown pass from sophomore Jackson Jones to Marion, and a 2-yard TD run by Mendoza, in the second half to close out the 69-27 victory.
Tualatin, for the game, had an amazing 726 yards of total offense in the win — 414 rushing yards and 312 passing yards.
Sayre led the rushing attack, gaining 165 yards on eight carries, with four touchdowns. Marion added 92 yards and two touchdowns on three carries. Mendoza ran for 59 yards and two scores on nine carries.
Jackson completed 14 of 17 pass attempts for 222 yards, with one touchdown and one interception. Jones completed five of nine passes for 90 yards and a score. Marion had three catches for 70 yards and a touchdown. Ross had three catches for 56 yards. Sayre had three receptions for 54 yards and senior tight end John Miller had two catches for 41 yards.
Marion's big game also included an interception on defense.
For Westview, Libby completed 28 of 63 passes for 358 yards and three touchdowns. Smalley had 11 catches for 184 yards, with two touchdowns.
North Medford, the No. 2 team out of the Southwest Conference, and the No. 10 team in the power rankings, brings an overall record of 8-2 into Friday's second-round game at Tualatin. The Black Tornado opened the playoffs with a 55-49 home overtime win over Reynolds.
The winner of Friday's second-round game at Tualatin will face either Jesuit or Liberty in the quarterfinal round of the state playoffs.
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