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Football: High school season kicks off; Federal Way rallies for big win over G-K
The expectations are sky high for the Federal Way Eagles’ football team this season. Head coach John Meagher returns three preseason all-state selections and numerous other starters from a season ago.
But Federal Way didn’t look the part of South Puget Sound League South Division contenders during the early-going Friday night inside Art Crate Stadium. Graham-Kapowsin rolled out to a commanding 14-3 lead just minutes into the opening quarter of both teams’ SPSL South opening game.
It was the same Graham-Kapowsin team that had dominated the Eagles, 41-17, during the 2010 season opener and last year’s loss seemed to set the tone for Federal Way. The Eagles dropped their first three games of 2010 and failed to make the postseason for the first time since 2005.
D.J. May and the rest of the 2011 Federal Way squad weren’t going to let that same thing happen this year.
The preseason all-state running back and one of the faster players in the SPSL, erupted for two second-quarter touchdowns to get the Eagles right back in the game. Federal Way eventually cruised to a relatively easy 37-14 win on Graham-Kapowsin’s home field. The Eagles tallied 34 unanswered points, including 27 in the second quarter alone.
May finished the first half with 100 yards rushing on just eight carries. The senior also scored on a 28-yard interception return early in the second half.
Junior wide receiver Mike Tate also had a big game for the Eagles.
Tate hauled in a 71-yard touchdown catch from first-year quarterback D’Londo Tucker to give Federal Way the lead for good in the second quarter, 17-14. Tate also ran in a two-yarder late in the first half following May’s second TD, to give the Eagles a 30-14 lead heading into the locker room.
Federal Way took an early 3-0 lead in the game on Colby Craig’s 27-yard field goal. But it was Graham-Kapowsin answered with two touchdowns pass from quarterback Drew Austin. The senior connected with Kahil Dawson for 76 yards and Zack Mershon for 28 yards.
Austin completed just 18 of 43 passes for 250 yards and also finished with a pair of interceptions.
The Eagles will open their home schedule Friday night at Federal Way Memorial Stadium against the Puyallup Vikings. Puyallup dominated Spanaway Lake, 56-7, in its opener.
In other action:
at Tahoma 38, Jefferson 31 – The Raiders had their chances Friday night in Maple Valley, but the Bears outscored Jefferson 24-7 during the second half to snag the SPSL North Division victory.
Tahoma got on the board first on a 4-yard touchdown run from Zach Browne. The Raiders’ Ian Tougher answered right back with a 2-yard touchdown run of his own. McKay Owsley followed with a 44-yard field goal for TJ to give the Raiders a 9-7 lead.
But Jefferson’s lead didn’t last long. Jason Smith returned the ensuing kickoff 95 yards to put Tahoma back on top, 14-9, after one quarter.
Jefferson senior K.W. Williams took over during the second quarter. Williams returned a fumble 70 yards for the touchdown and also converted the 2-point conversion. Williams, in his third year as TJ’s starting quarterback, hit Rhithvik Lagisetti with a 12-yard pass later in the quarter to put the Raiders up 24-14 at the half.
But the second half belonged to Tahoma. Jefferson’s lone score came on a 14-yard run from Williams in the third quarter. The Raiders host Kentwood Thursday at Federal Way Memorial Stadium.
At Emerald Ridge 21, Beamer 14 – Emerald Ridge’s Paul Allen caught a 20-yard touchdown pass from Jake Sommer in the third quarter to break a 14-14 tie Friday at Sparks Stadium.
Beamer’s Nick Bod opened the scoring with a 10-yard touchdown pass from Arjun Weherwatthager in first quarter to put the Titans up 7-0. But Emerald Ridge tallied the next two TDs to snag a 14-7 lead.
Beamer tied the score back up on a 1-yard touchdown run by Rafel Partida later in the second quarter to knot the score back up at 14-14.
The Titans host Bethel Saturday night at Federal Way Memorial Stadium.
Kennedy Catholic 47, at Decatur 6 – The Gators just didn’t have enough to compete against the ninth-ranked Lancers Friday night at Federal Way Memorial Stadium.
Kennedy rolled out to a quick 27-0 lead after the first quarter and led 47-0 during the third quarter Friday. Orion Prescott tallied four touchdown runs, including a 60-yarder in the second quarter.
University of Washington-bound quarterback Jason Thompson had one touchdown throw to Drew Thompson in the first quarter.
The Gators will take on Bremerton in another non-league contest Friday night.