High School Football

Richland slows down Sankey, heads to state (w/ video highlights)

RICHLAND -- The Richland Bombers did Friday what no Greater Spokane League team has been able to do this season: Make Gonzaga Prep running back Bishop Sankey look ordinary.

The Bombers held the Bullpups' record-setting running back to a season-low 153 yards on 33 carries in a 21-7 Eastern Regional playoff win at Fran Rish Stadium, sending Richland to its first 4A state playoff berth since 2000.

The Bombers (9-1) will meet third-ranked Ferris (10-0) -- the 2009 4A state runner-up -- on Friday in the first round of state in Spokane.

"We knew Bishop was a great running back, and he came in with a great reputation," said Bombers coach Mike Neidhold of the GSL's career rushing leader. "But our running backs had a chip on their shoulder. We've got some great guys who can break big runs, too."

Richland running backs Jake McKinney and B.K. Robinson combined for 203 yards and two touchdowns on 35 carries. The pair was more than a handful for Prep's defense, which struggled to adjust to their different styles.

"Jake has more of a gliding style, but B.K. is helter-skelter," Neidhold said. "He has horrible running form and terrible technique, but it's second-and-2 every time he touches the ball."

McKinney made a statement on the game's first play from scrimmage, running up the gut for a 20-yard gain.

"That pumped everybody up from the beginning," said Robinson, who ran for 89 yards and a score on 15 carries. McKinney carried 20 times for 114 yards and a touchdown.

The first quarter was scoreless, but the Bombers got a big break on the second play of the second quarter when Sankey muffed a punt at the Bullpups' 20-yard line. Robinson recovered the ball to set up Richland's first score, a 14-yard touchdown pass from Colter Quick to Jarrod Turner on a slant over the middle to make it 7-0 with 9:49 left in the half.

"We've preached all three phases of the game, and coach (Jason) DiStefano sets the tone for us on special teams," Neidhold said. "That play was a turning point for us."

Five minutes later, Robinson busted up the middle between Zack Bliss and Brady Simpson for a 35-yard touchdown run to make it 13-0, but the Bombers weren't comfortable, especially with a game-breaker like Sankey on the other side.

"He's pretty intimidating. We knew we had to play him tough," said Richland linebacker Grant Gallinger, who had eight tackles, including two of them for losses. "We just tried to swarm him and not give him any jump-around cutbacks."

On the fourth play of the third quarter, Sankey showed why he's one of the most feared backs around, bouncing off a tackle in Prep's backfield and then exploding up the middle for a 57-yard touchdown run to cut the Bombers' lead to 13-7.

"We had him stopped, but we stopped for half a second and he broke it," Neidhold said.

On Richland's next possession, Quick kept the drive alive, scrambling for a 23-yard gain around left tackle on third-and-13 from the Bombers' 48. Quick handed the ball off to McKinney on five of the next six plays, culminating in a 6-yard TD run with 3:57 left in the game.

McKinney suffered a shoulder injury early in the game but kept playing. McKinney's shoulder popped out briefly in the first half, but he returned to the game with some minor discomfort.

Neidhold said the injury would be evaluated but expects that McKinney will be ready for Ferris.

Richland 21, Gonzaga Prep 7

Gonzaga Prep 0 0 7 0 -- 7

Richland 0 13 8 0 -- 21


R--Jarrod Turner 14 pass from Colter Quick (Q Taychack kick)

R--B.K. Robinson 35 run (kick failed)

GP--Bishop Sankey 57 run (Shane Schmidlkofer kick)

R--Jake McKinney 6 run (Keenan Carrato pass from Quick)


RUSHING--GP, Schmidlkofer 5-13, Sankey 33-153, Griffin Hare 1-1. R, McKinney 20-114, Robinson 15-89, Quick 2-21.

PASSING--GP, Schmidlkofer 2-6-1-5, Sankey 0-1-0-0. R, Quick 3-7-0-22.

RECEIVING--GP, Sankey 1-1, Hare 1-4. R, Ellijah Gardaya 1-2, Turner 1-14, Grant Gallinger 1-6.


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