The high school playoff picture is sure to get a little clearer after Thursday night’s game at Lampson Stadium in Kennewick.
Week 7 of high school football opens a day early, with Walla Walla visiting Kennewick at 7 p.m.
Both are trying to either solidify a playoff berth or earn a playoff spot.
For Kennewick — 4-1 in Mid-Columbia Conference play and 5-1 overall — it’s simple.
The Lions have already clinched a Class 3A regional playoff position. So has crosstown rival Kamiakin, which has the same record as Kennewick.
But if the season ended today, the Lions would be the MCC’s top 3A seed by virtue of their 42-18 win over the Braves on Sept. 27.
Meanwhile, while it looks as though Chiawana may eventually clinch the MCC’s top 4A regional seed with its 5-0 MCC, 5-1 overall record, there are four schools still battling for that second 4A regional berth.
They are Pasco (3-2 MCC, 3-3 overall), Walla Walla (3-3, 3-3), Richland (2-3, 3-3) and Hanford (2-3, 3-3).
Walla Walla-Kennewick game
Wa-Hi has had a strong season so far under first-year head coach Greg Lupfer.
Sophomore running back Jakob Humphrey has been outstanding rushing the ball, with 505 yards. Quarterback Ryan Martuscelli has found a strong connection with wide receiver Dylan Ashbeck, who has caught 26 passes for 399 yards.
But the Blue Devils must figure out a way to stop that big Kennewick offensive line, which has been winning the battle of the trenches for four weeks.
If that’s not enough, sophomore RB Myles Mayovsky (599 yards rushing) has been who opposing defenses have been concentrating on stopping so far.
Because of that, quarterback Blaine Chavez has been making them pay when they forget about him. Last week, in a 55-20 win at Pasco, Chavez passed just 14 times. But he completed 9 of them for over 300 yards and six — yes, six — touchdown passes.
Sophomore Simeon Howard caught three of them.
All of this does not bode well for a Blue Devils defense which is ranked last in the MCC.
Meanwhile, the Lions have the No. 2-ranked MCC defense.
▪ Besides Chavez’s six TD passes, here are five other numbers that caught my eye from this past weekend’s games: Hanford QB Easton Wise-Hyde throwing for 339 yards and five touchdowns in the Falcons’ 70-42 shootout win over Sunnyside; his teammate, Kamari Durmas, stepping in for injured Dylan McElderry, and rushing 17 times for 245 yards; Kamiakin junior RB Tuna Altahir picking up his second consecutive 200-yard rushing game, carrying 30 times for 224 yards in a 37-27 win over Walla Walla; Marvell Cooks, Jr., carrying the ball 19 times for 208 yards in Chiawana’s 34-14 win over Hermiston; and Hermiston QB Sam Schwirse going 22-for-30 for 317 for the Bulldogs in that loss.
EOU adding sports
Eastern Oregon University announced Oct. 12 it was adding baseball and women’s lacrosse beginning in the fall of 2020.
EOU dropped baseball in 2006 due to budget cuts.
By bringing it back, plus the new women’s lacrosse program, the university expects to add 60 to 70 more student-athletes.
The baseball program especially could offer another option for numerous Mid-Columbia athletes, as EOU does a good job of recruiting this region in a number of its sports programs.
Reilly done for the season
Former Kamiakin quarterback Mike Reilly broke his left wrist in a game against the Edmonton Eskimos in the Canadian Football League on Oct. 12. Reilly, the quarterback for the BC Lions, currently leads the entire CFL in passing yards with 3,897.
In that Oct. 12 game, Edmonton won 19-6, mathematically eliminating the Lions from CFL playoff contention.
The week before, in a 55-8 BC win over the Toronto Argonauts, Reilly was 21 for 27 for 276 yards and five TD passes.
- Hanford grad Dani Mendoza has started four times at midfielder for Army’s 4-5-3 women’s soccer team. She has one assist this season.
- Wenatchee Valley freshman Luis Rodriguez (Royal) is second in scoring (5 goals, 1 assist) for the men’s soccer team, which is 4-3-3 so far this season.
- The CBC women’s soccer team beat Wenatchee Valley 2-1 on Oct. 9 in NWAC East play. Alyssa Lovell (Hawaii) scored off an assist from Cassidie Andrews (Hawaii) at the 67:49 mark. Rebecca Wheeler (Portland) scored the other Hawks goal at 9:45, as Bailey Whitney (Warden) got the assist.
- Mario Negrete (Sunnyside) scored off a pass from Juan Mendoza (East Valley-Yakima) at 53:53 to give CBC’s men’s soccer team a 1-0 victory over Wenatchee Valley on Oct. 9. Hawks keeper Danny Puga (Pasco) earned the shutout with 5 saves.
- Abbey Schwager (Walla Walla CC) is second in assists with 154 on the Concordia University-Portland volleyball team, which has a 6-8 record.
- Richland High grad Samantha Heilman has three goals and an assist for the 9-3 Gonzaga University women’s soccer team through Oct. 10.
- Kennewick High grad Justin Wagar is the head coach of the Grambling State women’s soccer team in Louisiana. The team has a 3-2-0 SWAC record, and is 5-8-1 overall.
- Ashley Ripplinger (Prosser) has 166 kills so far this season for the 11-10 Oregon Institute of Technology volleyball team this season. The Owls also have Hanford High grad Macy Jensen on the team.
- Tracy Melville (Lind-Ritzville) placed 25th overall for Western Washington University on Oct. 12 in the WWU Classic women’s cross country meet.
- Linebacker Grady Graff (Chiawana) has 21 tackles (11 solo, 10 assists) for the 2-4 Central Washington University football team this season. In a 44-6 win over Asuza Pacific on Oct. 12, Graff had seven tackles.
- Emily Russell (Southridge) has five starts and Chelsea Marozik (Hanford) has four starts for the 4-4-1 women’s soccer team at CWU. Russell has an assist.
- Aaliyah Valladares (Kennewick) has one start for the 2-7-1 Concordia-Portland women’s soccer team this season. She has one goal scored for them.
MCC Girls Soccer
Through Oct. 15
Richland 10-1, Chiawana 9-1, Kamiakin 7-3, Hanford 7-4, Walla Walla 7-4, Southridge 4-6, Kennewick 3-8, Hermiston 1-10, Pasco 0-11
Thursday, Oct. 17
Hanford at Southridge, 7 p.m.
Hermiston at Pasco, Edgar Brown Stadium, 7 p.m.
Richland at Chiawana, 7 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 19
Kennewick at Kamiakin, Lampson Stadium, noon
Through Oct. 15
Walla Walla 10-0, Richland 9-0, Chiawana 8-1, Kamiakin 5-4, Kennewick 5-5, Hermiston 3-6, Hanford 2-8, Southridge 1-9, Pasco 0-10
Thursday, Oct. 17
Chiawana at Richland, 7 p.m.
Kennewick at Kamiakin, 5:30 p.m.
Pasco at Hermiston, 7 p.m.
Southridge at Hanford, 7 p.m.