Josh Mendoza scored three touchdowns for the second straight week, and the Richland High School football team dispatched of the West Valley (Yakima) Rams 62-28 on Friday at Edgar Brown Memorial Stadium in the first round of the Class 4A state playoffs.
No. 2 Richland (11-0) will play at Gonzaga Prep — a 35-21 winner over Moses Lake on Friday — in the quarterfinals next weekend.
For the second straight week, Richland returned three interceptions for touchdowns, with Mendoza, Ryan Kriskovich and Victor Strasser cashing in for the scores this time around. In last week’s winner-to-state, 62-7 win over Mead, the Bombers intercepted six passes, with Mendoza getting three picks and returning two to the house.
West Valley quarterback Brandon Battle threw his fourth and final interception of Friday’s game to Sammy Cervantes in the second half.
With Richland leading 55-14 at halftime, the team benched its starters after the intermission. Having to sit out for the second half for the seventh time this season, Cade Jensen completed 13 of 20 passes for 145 yards and four touchdowns with no turnovers. Adam Weissenfels led the Richland receivers with 50 yards on four catches with a touchdown, and Mendoza caught TDs of 12 and 11 yards.
Parker McCary rushed for 112 yards on 15 carries with a touchdown, and Tsega Macduff had 64 yards on 5 totes with a second-half score.
Richland scored eight touchdowns in the first half despite its offense only touching the ball six times. That included the Bombers opting to run out the last 21 seconds of the half on their final possession.
Dallin Cluff caught two first-half passes for West Valley (7-3), but made them count. With the Rams down 41-0 in the second quarter, he snagged a bomb from Battle for a 74-yard catch-and-run TD. Then, near the end of the second quarter, he caught an 18-yard score from Jack Vanderbrake on a double-pass trick play for a 55-14 game, where it would stay until half.
West Valley running back Reggie Harris scored on a 14-yard screen pass from Battle and a 1-yard run in the fourth quarter with mostly backups on the field for Richland.
This story will be updated later tonight.
R—Adam Weissenfels 17 pass from Cade Jensen (Weissenfels kick)
R—Ryan Kriskovich 55 INT return (Weissenfels kick)
R—Connor Faucheux 4 pass from Jensen (run failed)
R—Parker McCary 5 run (Weissenfels kick)
R—Josh Mendoza 12 pass from Jensen (Weissenfels kick)
R—Victor Strasser 44 INT return (Weissenfels kick)
WV—Dallin Cluff 74 pass from Brandon Battle (pass failed)
R—Mendoza 11 pass from Jensen (Weissenfels kick)
R—Mendoza 96 INT return (Weissenfels kick)
WV—Cluff 18 pass from Jack Vanderbrake (Spencer Jolley pass from Vanderbrake)
R—Tsega Macduff 8 run (Ryan Piper kick)
WV—Reggie Harris 14 pass from Battle (Colby Kitt kick)
WV—Harris 1 run (Kitt kick)