Ties in sports often are referred to as “kissing your sister,” which, even if your sister looks like Scarlett Johansson, is none too appetizing.
So Kennewick coach Bill Templeton was happy to have someone frame the Lions’ 27-27 tie with Lake City of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, on Friday as a “hugging your brother” affair.
The Timberwolves are coached by Van Troxel, son of Kennewick legend Ed Troxel, so this was one was all in the family.
And, Templeton said, for a season-opener on the road with a slew of new starters, the Lions didn’t do too badly.
“I felt really good about things,” Templeton said. “We battled. Lake City is a team team, a two-platoon team, and we slugged it out.”
Templeton was pleased to see junior QB Dylan Tennancour throw three TD passes in his first varsity start. And he loved the toughness of his team battling through some adversity.
Devven Ramos, a top performer at running back and linebacker, took a helmet to the thigh on the third play of the game and was sidelined most of the night with a deep bruise before coming back for some key late carries.
Bodie Simpson, who caught one of Tennancour’s TDs, played through a twisted ankle, and one of Kennewick’s starting linebackers was throwing up on the bus with the flu on the way home.
“We were the walking wounded by the end of the game,” Templeton said. “The kids just battled, and I’m real proud of them.”
SUNS SHINE ON DEFENSE
The memorable moment from Southridge’s 9-7 win over Richland was Brenden Kelly’s 34-yard TD grab with no time left on the clock.
But Suns coach Tony Reiboldt couldn’t say enough about the performance of his defense, which limited to Bombers to 90 total yards and no offensive points.
“We really focused this year on being more of a team defense, a swarming defense, being more aggressive,” said Reiboldt, himself an old defensive coach. “It really showed.”
He praised the entire unit in keeping up with the many looks that Richland threw at them, giving an extra nod to cornerbacks David Mazzei and Clay Gonzales.
“(Richland) threw 15 different formations at us,” Reiboldt said. “They came out in a set ... and when the play was over, they got right back on the ball. They had two plays ready, hurry-up, boom, boom. And our kids hurried up to be in position to make plays.
“It was a testiment to how much we worked to get ready for Richland.”
For Richland coach Mike Neidhold’s part, he also loved how his defense played ... but he wasn’t thrilled with how much they played.
“Southridge ran 90 plays,” he said. “That’s unbelievable. That’s what college teams do, and they have 15-minute quarters (vs. 12 minutes for high school).”
And, he added, it wasn’t that the defense couldn’t get off the field. It’s that the offense couldn’t stay on.
“You can’t line up and get 90 yards of offense,” Neidhold said. “And we had 80 yards in penalties. When you net 10 yards, you don’t deserve to win. That’s Southridge’s defense’s credit.”