Football: Federal Way blown away by Skyview, 56-14

Federal Way senior receiver Alden Coleman runs with the ball after catching a pass during the first quarter against Skyview Saturday night in Vancouver. Skyview won the preliminary round state playoff game, 56-14. The loss ended Federal Way
Federal Way senior receiver Alden Coleman runs with the ball after catching a pass during the first quarter against Skyview Saturday night in Vancouver. Skyview won the preliminary round state playoff game, 56-14. The loss ended Federal Way's season.
— image credit: Casey Olson/The Mirror

The Federal Way Eagles just couldn't keep up with the high-powered Skyview Storm offense during their preliminary round state playoff game Saturday night at the Kiggen Bowl in Vancouver.

The Greater St. Helen's League-champion Storm blew away the Eagles, 56-14, on a rainy and cold night. Skyview and its senior quarterback Austin Dodge put on a big-time clinic on how to run the spread offense Saturday night.

"We knew going in that they had a good offense," Meagher said. "But they ratcheted it up a notch. They executed at a very high level. We ran into a team that gelled at the right time."

To say the least.

The Storm scored touchdowns on their first eight drives of the game and quarterback Austin Dodge finished 15 of 16 with an amazing 428 yards passing and six touchdowns, despite being pulled after the first drive of the second half after putting Skyview up 56-7 and necessitating a running clock. In Washington high school football, a running clock is employed when a team goes ahead by 45 or more points.

The Storm (9-2) amassed 478 yards during the first half of play. Skyview scored on drives of 62, 71, 75, 90, 35, 65 and 80 yards during the first two quarters. They also added a 65-yard drive during the first minute of the second half.

Things didn't start out too bad for the Eagles (8-3) Saturday on a rainy and wet night in Vancouver. The Federal Way offense moved the ball fairly well during their first two drives of the game. But both of those drives ended with fumbles by Eagle quarterback Nick Tanielu and running back Trenton Pinson in Skyview territory.

And, needless to say, Skyview took full advantage of the turnovers to take a quick 21-0 lead midway through the first quarter.

"We got down early and couldn't dig deep and respond," Meagher said. "We were a little drained physically and emotionally from playing three games in 10 days. But hats off to them. We have got to be able to find some reserves and we weren't able to do that."

As the fourth-place team from the South Puget Sound League, Federal Way was forced to travel to Gig Harbor on Tuesday to play a winner-to-state, loser-out game against the Tides. The Eagles won the game, 35-21, to earn the trip to Vancouver Saturday.

Federal Way's lone touchdown of the first half came when Daytrez Sterling caught a 39-yard pass from Tanielu after a Skyview defender inadvertantly tipped the ball to him. The Eagles got a second-half touchdown run from Isiah Umipig. The senior scored from 20 yards out after replacing Tanielu at quarterback.

Skyview's Ellis Henderson finished with 194 yards receiving and caught three of Dodge's touchdown passes during the first half. Karl Graves had two TD catches and 159 yards receiving. The Storm also run the ball effectively. Matt Spears had 82 yards on 10 carries with a touchdown, and Jonny Barrett found the end zone on his only carry of the night.

"We knew that they moved well, but it's hard to judge speed on film," Meagher said. "They shredded us up. They are a very good football team. I wouldn't be surprised at all if they win a couple more games."

The loss ends Federal Way's season after advancing into the postseason for the fourth year in a row. During three of those years, the Eagles have lost in the preliminary round. Last year, Federal Way advanced into the 16-team state playoffs for the first time since 1976 before losing to Skyline in the opening round.

"We have been the best school in the district for a number of years," Meagher said. "We have generally made the playoffs. Now we just have to be one of the better teams in the state. We can't be satisfied."

Skyview will host the Bethel Braves (9-1) on Friday in the opening round of the 16-team Class 4A State Playoffs.

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