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SPSL NORTH 4A FOOTBALL: Auburn dominates Federal Way in opener, wins 42-7
Auburn senior Chris Young didn’t even wait until the end of the game to celebrate.
The Trojans' starting fullback put an exclamation mark on the team’s 42-7 season-opening game win over Federal Way before the third quarter expired Thursday night.
While covering a punt, Young cornered Eagles returner Kelyn Rowe and emphatically put the 5-foot-10, 168-pound senior on the ground with a pro-wrestling style flip that he later described as his “Brian Dawkins slam.”
Young's all-around play helped punctuate the Trojans' dominating performance in a South Puget Sound League North Division 4A opener for both schools at Auburn Memorial Stadium. The Trojans haven't lost at home in four seasons.
“I kind of expected this whole game to be a blowout, actually,” the University of Washington-bound Young said. “Like I’ve been telling all the other interviewers, just the fact that we have all that experience on the line – that makes us a deadly force.”
Auburn put its stamp on the game early, recovering a Federal Way onside kick and scoring a touchdown on the first play from scrimmage – with a Young block springing junior Alphonse Wade, who scampered into the end zone from 40 yards out.
“It was really a team effort,” Wade said after the game. “There was good blocking. I think we’re going to be pretty good. I was really excited tonight.”
Auburn did what they did best the rest of the game, pounding the ball down its opponents throat, with Wade, Young and halfback Austin Embody running behind a big, athletic offensive line.
“We’ve got some running backs who can run the ball well and a good offensive line, so we hope to have some big plays,” said Auburn coach Gordon Elliott.
Auburn scored five times on plays of 34 yards or longer and had more than 350 rushing yards in the game.
Young finished the game with three rushing touchdowns and had 110 yards on the ground. He also had two sacks. Wade ran for two touchdowns and 118 yards and Embody added 85 yards, rushing for one TD and throwing for another.
Senior Clayton Brown had an interception in the first quarter.
“I really didn’t expect a blowout like this,” Trojans quarterback Marshall Klontz said. “I expected to win, but I definitely did not expect a blowout like that. That is exciting for the rest of the season.”
Defensively, the Trojans checked the Eagles' rushing attack, holding them to negative yards on the ground until the fourth quarter.
Federal Way quarterback Nick Tanielu found a little success in the air, completing 21 of 34 passes for 223 yards and a TD.
Now, with the opener out of the way, the Trojans prepare for another showdown, this time with Kentwood at 7 p.m. this Friday at French Field. The Conquerors survived their season opener, scraping by Central Kitsap 39-27 in nonleague play on Thursday.
“We’re going to prepare for every game like it’s our last game, come out with intensity and blow them out, too,” Young said.
“Kentwood is a big game,” Klontz agreed said. “I think this gives us momentum, but I just hope it doesn’t give us too big of a head. But it definitely gives us a bunch of momentum.”