By RayJaun Stelly, The Seattle Medium
Rainier Beach coming in ranked 10th with a 4-2 record heading into district playoffs, would line up again 23rd ranked Snohomish. With a rainy forecast and bright lights, one team would advance and one team’s season would come to an end.
The Vikings’ answered first with a rushing touchdown by Te’Elijah Holloway three minutes into the game. Following their touchdown, the defense forced a three-and-out and made Snohomish punt.
Upon receiving the punt, quarterback Chance Guadiz found Jaelin Green for a touchdown pass. With the touchdown, Rainier Beach scored 14 points in just six minutes of action.
Leading 14-0 heading into the second quarter, Snohomish was unable to get their offense rolling and found themselves punting again. Guadiz would pass deep to Reymani Lopez for his second touchdown pass of the game.
Down 20-0, Snohomish finally put together a positive drive toward the end zone. The Panthers would wear down the Vikings at the line of scrimmage, which resulted in a 12-yard rushing touchdown.
Cutting the lead to 13, Snohomish seemed to have a different energy about themselves. As the defense forced numerous penalties against Rainier Beach, the Panthers stopped Rainier Beach’s momentum and didn’t allow them to score in the second quarter.
Although Snohomish played a great quarter, the lead was still 20-7 in favor of Rainier Beach heading into halftime.
During the second half, Snohomish went back to running the ball which paid off, as they wore down the Viking defense and scored their second touchdown of the game.
What was once a 20 point lead, the Panthers now found themselves down by just a touchdown. Beach’s defense had given up 14 unanswered points, and needed their offense to respond.
Instead, both defenses responded. Snohomish got their third consecutive stop and Rainier Beach forced an offensive interference penalty which halted the Panthers drive.
Starting the fourth quarter, Rainier Beach punted and forced a fumble, which gave them great field position. Having been held scoreless for two quarters, they looked to finally put some more points up.
Guadiz would find Nahmier Robinson for the Vikings’ first touchdown of the second half, and Scot’Tre Humphrey gave Rainier Beach a 28-14 lead after he ran in a two-point conversion.
With a 14 point lead, the Vikings would need to answer defensively as they could not contain the Panthers rushing attack. Rainier Beach began forcing Snohomish to throw which got them off their rhythm.
With back-to-back sacks, an incomplete pass, and a turnover on downs Rainier Beach began clicking defensively in the clutch. Controlling the time of possession, the Vikings would put together a drive which would run the clock down to zero’s.
Moving forward star offensive and defensive lineman Josh Conerly, Jr., realized what is needed if the Vikings are going make a deep run this postseason
“Staying consistent, not allowing the momentum to shift, and establish the run game especially in wet rainy games like this,” said Josh Conerly. Rainier Beach, despite only scoring once in the second half, will advance to the next round of the WIAA 3A playoffs with a 28-14 win.