Football: The Mavs make their move

Monday, October 21, 2019

Shorecrest Cheer Squad
Photo by Lesa Cole.jpg


Going into Friday Nights 3A High School competition with a 4-way tie for first place in WesCo South, something had to give, especially considering two of those teams would soon be facing off at Edmonds Stadium.

With the 8 o’clock game against the Meadowdale Mavericks, Highlander fans who arrived early witnessed Snohomish hand Lynnwood its third defeat, keeping the Panthers at the top of the division and ensuring that Shorecrest needed a win to keep pace.

Once again, the Scots won the toss and opted to send their Defense onto the field to start the game. An intentional pooch kick by Gavin Dalziel gave Meadowdale possession on their own 31-yard line. On the very first play, an encroachment penalty on the Scots immediately moved the ball 5 yards closer to a first down. Call it excitement or lack of discipline, a patient Mavs Offense had immediately gotten the better of the visitors.

After a carry of 34 yards, the Shorecrest Defense tightened up and the Mavs Offense started to sputter. However, a second encroachment penalty on 3rd and 1 gave Meadowdale another set of downs with which to work. Defensive Lineman Markus Selzler came up big with a 6-yard tackle for loss and lacking the type of quality kicker that the Scots possess, Meadowdale was forced to punt instead of attempting a short field goal.

The first Offensive series for the Scots would be lackluster to say the least. Unable to move the Mavs over-sized Defensive front, for whom individual weight was purposely not listed in the game program, a couple 1 and 2-yard carries produced a 3rd down and 8. In this particular scenario, as has been witnessed all season long, Scots QB Eladio Fountain opted to throw a 30 yard pass downfield instead of the 8 yard slant needed for a first down conversion. Perhaps the intention was to catch the defense off-guard? Regardless the pass fell incomplete and Shorecrest would have to punt. Senior Davis Stallings, also a standout catcher for the Scots Baseball Team in his first season playing football, booted the ball deep into Mavs territory. 

This time the Scots Defense would hold the Mavs to a few short gains and Eladio and Co. would again take possession of the ball. A quick pitch around the left side to 6’0 230lb RB Markus Selzler would produce an 11-yard first down, but dropped passes and an attempt to establish an inside running game resulted in very little productivity and the first quarter would end knotted at zero.

The Meadowdale Mavericks would be the first to strike in the 2nd quarter, when after moving the ball downfield a screen pass to RB Saul Hernandez was fumbled, but recovered on the 1-yard line. On the next play the Mavs would gain the single yard needed for the night's first touchdown. 

Senior Scots
Photo by Lisa Mize
 

In a game that could have gone the way of the Scots, a 2nd and 3rd quarter wrought with unnecessary penalties would prove to be their undoing. At one point it appeared to the Shorecrest faithful as though the referees were simply hanging their laundry (yellow penalty flags) out to dry. Holding, false starts, facemask, a questionable pass interference and several unsportsmanlike conduct calls enabled the Mavs to capitalize and build momentum. Frustrated by their loss of composure, the Scots and their fans looked forward to a halftime break in which to regroup.

Called on to produce a nice punt of 40 yards, Scots Punter Stallings again pinned the Mavs deep in their own territory. With 6:58 left in the first half, Meadowdale again mounted a drive by utilizing a balanced offensive attack. A pass to the end zone that appeared to many as having hit the ground was called a touchdown and the Mavs scored their second of the night. Fortunately, busting through the line to block the extra point attempt was Junior Lineman Jordan Glesener who continues to be a leader on both sides of the ball.

With the first half winding down the Scots tried to quickly get back into the game by going for the home run. Instead of “dinking and dunking” 5 and 6 yards passes and methodically working their way downfield, they again resorted to the long ball. Able to prevent the Scots from gaining yardage on the ground, the Mavs Secondary was concentrated on shutting down the Scots passing attack. In addition, the screen pass that had worked so well for them against Stanwood also failed to materialize.

Based on the Scots Offensive output and the Defense's inability to produce turnovers, the score at halftime should have indicated an even bigger lead for Meadowdale. Regardless, it was halftime and Coach Christensen had 2 more quarters in which to rally his team, something he’s had great success accomplishing this season.

Taking the kickoff to start the 3rd quarter, SC’s approach to offense changed. With short passes, they now seemed to effortlessly move the ball. After a less than stellar first half, the normally reliable Derrick Williams became a secondary target while Carlos Torres and Des Fox filled the gap.

What was shaping up to be a solid drive stalled after the Scots were called for unnecessary roughness, resulting in a loss of down and 15-yard penalty. Now on 4th and 20, the Scots opted to keep QB Eladio Fountain on the field and “quick-kicked” the ball a short way downfield. With several stronger legs on the sideline, the decision to do this more than once during the game left many in the stands scratching their heads. Perhaps, the idea was to catch the Mavs unprepared? If so, they had not yet taken the bait.

With time running down in the 3rd quarter and the Scots trailing by only 6, an impressive defensive stop allowed the Highlanders Offense to mount another drive. However, under extreme pressure and scrambling, QB Eladio Fountain attempted a pass which fell short and into the arms of a Mavs Defender. 

The following possession for Meadowdale resulted in a 47-yard touchdown pass and the Mavs now had a two-score lead.

After the ensuing kickoff, several things happened. The Scots immediately went to work on offense, driving all the way downfield and into scoring range. But again under pressure and scrambling, Fountain floated a pass towards the end zone that was intercepted.

Undeterred, the Scots “Darkside” Defense had now started to clamp down and successfully forced another 3 and out. With 4:42 left in the contest, Fountain quickly connected with #9 Derrick Williams for a score and with Gavin Dalziel’s extra point, the Scots were once again down by only 6.

Refusing to give up, the Scots Defense again secured the ball giving the Offense one last chance. This time to win the game.

With under a minute left, try as they may, the much smaller Scots Offensive Line had trouble keeping the Mavs out of the backfield. In a desperate attempt to make something happen, #19 Fountain fumbled the ball and the Mavs would take possession running out the clock.

Final score Meadowdale 20, Shorecrest 14.

The Scots will play their final home game Friday October 25th against the 2 – 3 (in league) Lynnwood Royals and a win will prepare them for the Week 9 Crossover game November 1st. So, for Highlander Fans, we’re just getting started.

Of Special Note: This Dad of a Shorecrest Football Player would like to pay his respects to Edmonds Stadium Announcer Tom Davis who did an outstanding job calling Friday Night's game. His professionalism is unparalleled and his enthusiasm for both teams competing was refreshing. 





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