Football: Federal Way gets by Gig Harbor, 35-21; Skyview up next in preliminary round of state playoffs

The Federal Way Eagles and Gig Harbor Tides have become pretty familiar with each other on the football field.

For the third time in the last four years, the two teams played in a loser-out, winner-moves-on playoff game. And for the second-straight season, it's the Eagles who get to keep playing.

Federal Way (8-2) blew by Gig Harbor, 35-21, at Tuesday night's district play-in game at Roy Anderson Field in Purdy. Gig Harbor (4-6) finished fifth in the Narrows League and the Eagles were the fourth-place team from the South Puget Sound League North Division.

Next up for Federal Way, who have won seven games in a row after starting the season 1-2, is a trip to Vancouver to take on the Greater St. Helen's League champion Skyview Storm at 7 p.m. Saturday night at the Kiggins Bowl in the preliminary round of 32-team district playoffs. The Storm enter the game after finishing 5-0 in the GSHL and 7-2 overall.

Tuesday night against Gig Harbor, the Eagles got another solid game from senior running back Trenton Pinson. Just five days after setting a SPSL record with seven touchdowns during a rout of Jefferson, Pinson finished with 156 yards on 28 yards against the Tides.

The 6-foot, 185-pounder also added a pair of touchdowns and eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark for the season. Entering the Skyview game, Pinson has amassed 1,108 yards and scored 22 touchdowns.

His running has been the key during the Eagles' current seven-game win streak. Pinson has been over 100 yards in six of the seven games and scored 18 touchdowns.

Pinson really got churning during the second half against Gig Harbor. But during the first half, the Eagles' offense relied on junior quarterback Nick Tanielu, who had a very efficient game against Gig Harbor. Tanielu finished with 206 yards on 14-of-18 passing. He also tallied Federal Way's first touchdown of the game on a 1-yard run in the first quarter.

The Eagles extended their lead to 14-0 when Tanielu hit Siona Ili with a 10-yard touchdown pass. Gig Harbor, however, jumped right back into the game with a 16-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Garrett Schmidke to Jesse Cauble in the second quarter to cut the lead to 14-7 at halftime.

Federal Way got the lead back to 14 on the fourth play of the second half when Tanielu hit Alden Coleman on a 60-yard strike to extend the Eagles' lead to 21-7.

The Tides answered back quickly on their next possession, when Spencer Manjarrez ran the ball in from 8-yards out to cut the lead to 21-14. But the Eagles had another quick answer for Gig Harbor two plays later when Tanielu hit Daytrez Sterling for a 78-yard gain down to the Gig Harbor 2-yard line.

Pinson scored on a 2-yard run up the middle and later added a 1-yarder to give Federal Way a commanding 35-14 lead in the fourth quarter. Gig Harbor added a late touchdown to finalize the score.

Federal Way 35, Gig Harbor 21

Federal Way 6 8 13 8 — 35

Gig Harbor 0 7 7 7 — 21

Federal Way — Nick Tanielu 1 run (kick blocked)

Federal Way — Siona Ili 10 pass from Tanielu (Tanielu run)

Gig Harbor — Jesse Cauble 16 pass from Schmidke (Korey Durke kick)

Federal Way — Alden Coleman 60 pass from Tanielu (Kelyn Rowe kick)

Gig Harbor — Spencer Manjarrez 8 run (Durke kick)

Federal Way — Trenton Pinson 2 run (kick blocked)

Federal Way — Pinson 1 run (Jaylen Price pass from Tanielu)

Gig Harbor — Jenkins 19 pass from Schmidke (Durke kick)

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