New year, same result.
The Waitsburg-Prescott football team opened the Class 2B state playoffs with a resounding 56-20 victory over Oroville on Friday at Edgar Brown Stadium in Pasco.
“It’s a new group, but the old styles,” Waitsburg-Prescott senior Dalton Estes said. “It feels a little bit different, but as a team it feels the same.
“We’ve come a long way as a team, but as the season has progressed we’ve become a family.”
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The Cardinals will play Reardan in the Class 2B quarterfinals next weekend, likely in Spokane.
Estes is one of a few returners off of the 2011 team that won the state title. This season has been far from perfect, but the Cardinals (10-1) looked like their old selves at least offensively Friday.
Estes rushed for 144 yards and three touchdowns, shaking off an ankle injury early in the game.
“Up front we knew they’d be tough, but we were pretty satisified with our blocking,” Estes said.
The offensive line dominated, allowing no sacks and rarely letting Oroville get any pressure on quarterback Stirling Eastman.
Eastman finished 11-for-11 for 260 yards and two touchdowns. He also rushed for 56 yards and a score. James Thompkins caught four passes for 118 yards and a touchdown, making a nice move to shake the defense on the 65-yard score.
“The offense won the day, no question,” Waitsburg-Prescott coach Jeff Bartlow said. “The O-line played really good. They pass blocked really good, and protected Stirling.”
Sophomore Chance Leroue jumpstarted Waitsburg-Prescott early, returning a short kick 76 yards for a touchdown to give the Cardinals an early 7-6 lead.
After the defense forced a three-and-out, Eastman connected with Luke Alexenko and Roy Ebong on long pass plays setting up Leroue’s 10-yard touchdown run.
That’s when Estes took over.
Early in the second quarter he went over the right side, breaking two tackles before scoring from 36-yards out. After another Oroville three-and-out, he carried three consecutive times eventually punching it in from the 12 to put the Cardinals on top 28-6.
“When I see a hole, I hit it,” he said.
In the second half, the defense warmed up, holding Oroville to just one touchdown. The Hornets did have the ball for nearly 12 minutes at one point, thanks to recovering an onside kick, but the Cardinals didn’t allow them back in the game.Bartlow singled out Danny Stansell as playing solid int he second half at linebacker, as well as Leroue’s phyiscal play on the defensive line.
“We lost a lot of good kids from last year,” Bartlow said, “but we’re right where we want to be.
“I can’t be more proud of them than I am right now.”
Oroville 6 14 0 6 — 26
Waitsburg-Prescott 14 20 20 0 — 54
O—Tanner Smith 22 pass from Luke Kindred (kick failed)
W-P—Chance Leroue 76 kickoff return (Dalton Estes kick)
W-P—Leroue 10 run (Estes kick)
W-P—Estes 36 run (Estes kick)
W-P—Estes 12 run (Estes kick)
O—Smith 17 pass from Kindred (Dustin Nigg run)
W-P—Stirling Eastman 5 run (kick failed)
O—Kindred 1 run (run fails)
W-P—Leroue 39 pass from Eastman (kick failed)
W-P—James Thompkins 65 pass from Eastman (Estes kick)
W-P—Estes 6 run (Estes kick)
O—Kindred 13 run (run failed)
RUSHING—Oroville, Kindred 26-102, Logan Mills 9-29, Cody Tibbs 4-19, Eddie Ocampo 8-14, Nigg 7-10, Jose Barbosa 2-10, Smith 2-1, Trevor Shearer 2-0. Waitsburg-Prescott, Estes 8-144, Eastman 6-56, Leroue 3-18, Jason Carter 2-22, Jada Alfred 3-11.
PASSING—Oroville, Kindred 9-17-0—192. Waitsburg-Prescott, Eastman 11-11-0—260.
RECEIVING—Oroville, Smith 9-192. Waitsburg-Prescott, Thompkins 4-118, Roy Ebong 3-44, Leroue 2-60, Luke Alexenko 1-34, Estes 1-4, Kobie Brown 1-3.
SACKS—Oroville, none. Waitsburg-Prescott, Leroue 2-13, Ben Shafer 1-5.
FUMBLE RECOVERIES—Waitsburg-Prescott, Alfred 1-0.
FIRST DOWNS—O 18, WP 18. FUMBLES-LOST—O 1-1, WP 0-0. PENALTIES-YARDS—O 6-54, WP 5-66. PUNTS-AVG.—O 3-27.6, WP 1-45.