High School Football

Kamiakin rolls past Southridge 56-7 (w/ gallery, video)

KENNEWICK -- The Kamiakin football team is like an elevator filled with toxic gas, on fire and plunging 60 stories to the ground.

So many ways to hurt you, and it's really going to get ugly.

The Braves scored twice on punt returns, twice more on interception returns and flat ran over the Southridge Suns in a 56-7 regional playoff rout at Lampson Stadium on Friday night.

Play-maker Tim White scored on the punts and an interception to start the second half. Dom Davis had a 93-yard pick-six to end the first along with 109 yards and two more scores on the ground.

And on a night when Kamiakin's vaunted passing game was mostly shelved, the Braves instead ran the ball for 226 yards.

"It feels good," Davis said after a season-high in rushing and scoring. "It's always good to beat a rival, especially in the playoffs and especially like this."

While the season ends for the Suns (4-6), the No. 5 Braves (10-0) will await the winner of today's game between Kelso (6-3) and Seattle Prep (7-2) next week back at Lampson.

Kamiakin's special teams showed up right from the start. The opening kickoff, which the Suns kicked short to smartly stay away from White, was hauled in at the 32 by upback Jesse Houser, who collided with his own blocker before rumbling down to the 27.

Zip-zip-zip, the Braves were in the end zone on Davis' first scoring run.

The game was 14-0 when the Suns notched their only score thanks to a big play of their own. AJ Henderson slipped away from the defender after hauling in Matt Mendenhall's pass at midfield and raced all the way down to the 1 on the 74-yard play.

Three plays later, Josh Richards scored on a 6-yard throw.

Just when it seemed like Southridge was getting on track -- Jon Snider intercepted Kamiakin's Joey Jansen at the Suns 1 to stop the Braves' next drive -- the wheels fell off.

With Southridge punting from its own 19, White fielded the ball at the 50 and ran untouched down the right side, taking care of the last coverage guy with a knee-bending fake.

Boom, 21-7.

After the Suns went 3-and-out on their next drive, White was deep again, this time going 46 yards down the left sideline.

Pow, 28-7. And it all happened in less than a minute.

"We work on punt returns, kick returns, special teams 20 minutes a day every practice," White said. "It's not about luck. It's the skill we have in our returns."

The punt returns staggered the Suns, and the defensive TDs finished them.

Trying to get back in the game, Southridge was at the Kamiakin 6 with time running out in the half. After back-to-back incompletions, Mendenhall dropped back under heavy pressure and tried to find someone breaking free across the middle.

Instead, Davis got his hands on the ball at the 7 and never looked back, crossing the goal line as the halftime siren sounded.

"They could have run it all night long," Suns coach Tony Reiboldt said. "What came into play was the special teams" and interception returns.

On Southridge's fourth play of the third quarter, White tracked down a ball overthrown to the sideline and went 55 yards for the back-breaker.

It was part of another big day for the Kamiakin defense, which limited Southridge to 46 yards on 21 carries and forced five turnovers. Mendenhall threw for 219 yards but needed 46 throws to get there.

"Defense is just nails," Kamiakin coach Scott Biglin said. "Outstanding. They're one of the top defenses in the state, and they just played lights out."

* Kevin Anthony: 509-582-1403; kanthony@tricityherald.com

Kamiakin 56, Southridge 7

Southridge 0 7 0 0 -- 7

Kamiakin 14 28 14 0 -- 56

SCORING PLAYS

K--Dom Davis 7 run (Garrett Bowe kick)

K--Davis 14 run (Bowe kick)

K--Drew Oord 1 run (Bowe kick)

S--Josh Richards 6 pass from Matt Mendenhall (Chandler Mertens kick)

K--Tim White 50 punt return (Bowe kick)

K--White 46 punt return (Bowe kick)

K--Davis 93 interception return (Bowe kick)

K--White 55 interception return (Bowe kick)

K--Cody Wilmoth 6 run (Bowe kick)

STATISTICS

RUSHING--S, Chris Haueter 8-35, Dallin Palmer 10-4, Mendenhall 2-11, Dallas Jones 1-(minus 4). K, Davis 12-109, Oord 5-73, Wilmoth 3-19, Joey Jansen 1-16.

PASSING--S, Mendenhall 18-46-4-219. K, Jansen 10-16-2-86.

RECEIVING--S, AJ Henderson 5-119, Richards 5-33, Palmer 4-59, Haueter 2-14, Jones 1-7, Mikey Sanchez 1-6. K, AJ Griffiths 4-22, Tyler Holle 3-45, Oord 1-9, White 1-6, Brandon Larson 1-4.

FIRST DOWNS--S 10, K 11. FUMBLES-LOST--S 1-1, K 1-1. PENALTIES-YARDS--S 3-35, K 6-55.

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