Lake Stevens Journal - Your hometown newspaper since 1960




September 17, 2014

B.A.P. Photography

Justin Brown

Big game.  Big home crowd.  Big Disappointment.  Lake Stevens lost to non-league rival Marysville-Pilchuck 40-28 last Friday night.

    In a tussle for serious local bragging rights, the Tomahawks, the state’s third-ranked 3A team, owned the fourth quarter after Lake (ranked ninth in 4A) had dominated the third quarter to tie it at 21-21 after twice trailing by two touchdowns in the first half.

    M-P senior running back Austin Joyner, a WSU commit, flashed his typical explosiveness, igniting for four touchdowns and 195 yards gained in 13 carries.  Impressively, Joyner played most of the game with a hurting hip-pointer.  He has averaged in his career at M-P an astonishing 15+ yards per carry.

    Despite Joyner’s brilliance Lake had its chances to win this game but couldn’t get it done.

    Lake mangled its first half opportunities with 65 yards in penalties (to M-P’s zero yards in that department).  Lake finished the game with 107 penalty yards to 28 for M-P, after Lake had just one penalty for five yards in its opening win vs. Meadowdale. And Lake blew a chance to score on its opening possession when, following a Jacob Eason to Tevin Gray 39-yard completion for a first down on the M-P 11, it surrendered the ball short of a first down after four Andrew Grimes rushes netted all but a couple of inches that would have given the Vikings first and goal on the one.

    A touchdown there would have matched M-P’s opening “drive” when Joyner burst around the right side untouched for a 79-yard TD on the game’s second play.

    Lake had another chance to knot the score in the first quarter when Viking linebacker Kolby Jones recovered a M-P fumble on the latter’s 13 yard line.  Grimes rushed for three yards, then Eason hit Josh Rasmussen for an apparent 10-yard TD.  Not so, because Lake was flagged for offsides on the play.  Eason’s next pass was caught by Gray but for a five yard loss, and the next was incomplete, setting up Ignacio Ponce’s 37-yard field goal try, which fell short.

    M-P took over on its 20 and seven plays later Joyner scored from the seven, a drive which benefitted from a 15-yard penalty against the Vikings for a hit on an out of bounds ball carrier.  It was 14-0 for the visitors with 2:09 left in the opening quarter.

    Lake then mounted a 10-play drive which ended in another turnover via loss of downs on the M-P one yard line.  Despite a 27-yard scamper by Eason (longest run of his career so far) and his 15-yard completion to Riley Krenz resulting in first and goal at the M-P four, Lake could only gain three additional yards thereafter including Eason’s pass to Justin Brown on fourth down, a gain of two yards to the one.  

    Still, 11:13 remained before halftime, and Lake was racking up yards even if it had no points to show for it yet.

    A botched punt which travelled just 13 yards to the M-P 22 set up Lake with its first TD of the game, accomplished via three Grimes rushes, the final one for a seven-yard score.  Ponce’s PAT kick cut the gap to 14-7 with 8:01 left in the half.

    M-P then scored later in the quarter, a 78-yard, 11-play drive kept alive by another Viking 15-yard penalty, with workhorse running back Page Killian scoring from the two.

    It was 21-7 for the Toms with 3:09 left in the half.

    That turned out to be plenty of time for Lake to cut the gap to 21-14 at 1:04 before intermission, a 95-yard, nine-play march which opened with a 23-yard Grimes run, a 45-yard Eason to Gray completion (the latter making a nice catch) and four straight Eason completions to polish off the drive, the final one an eight-yarder to Gray.

    Lake completely ruled the third quarter,  outgaining M-P by 96 yards to nine and running 21 plays to three.

    A brilliantly efficient 19-play, 77-yard drive (including 11 of 13 completions by Eason for 66 yards, five of them to Krenz) saw Lake tie the score at 21-21 on the latter’s 4-yard reception.  The drive consumed all but 3:11 of the third quarter.

    Lake’s defense then forced an M-P three and out, Lake taking over after a punt on its own 42 as the third quarter neared its end.

    Eason connected with Krenz for a 12-yard gain and a first down on the M-P 46, the Vikings looking in great shape to take the lead.  But when Joyner at defensive back broke up a potential Viking fourth down pass completion his team took over on downs on the M-P 43 with 11:10 left (Lake has not punted in its first two games of the season).

    On third and 13 Joyner broke a 29-yard run to the Viking 31.  Page followed with a 17-yard gain then scored three plays later from the five.  A botched snap foiled the PAT try, leaving the score at 27-21 with 8:22 left.

    Lake’s ensuing series saw Eason complete just one of four passes (that one a one-yard loss to Krenz), M-P taking over on the Viking 25 with 7:54 left.

    Two plays later Joyner scored from 22 yards out.  His attempted run for a two-point conversion was stopped short by Jones, Krenz and Chris Lasater.

    33-21 M-P lead with 7:09 left.

    It took Lake 11 plays to notch 80 yards and a TD with exactly four minutes left.  Eason completed six of eight for 93 yards including a 41-yarder deep to Gray who snared a tipped ball, giving Lake first down on the M-P three.  Grimes scored on two short runs from there, making it 33-28 following Ponce’s PAT.  (The excess passing yardage is accounted for by a 16-yard Viking penalty during the drive).

    Lake then attempted an onside kickoff which at first appeared to award the Vikings with possession on the M-P 48, but the successful recovery, initially setting off a jubilant Lake Stevens celebration, was negated when it was ruled that a Viking had illegally touched the ball a yard short of the required 10 yards that it must travel.

   Instead of a chance to drive for a winning touchdown, Lake’s defense needed to hunker down to stop M-P from running out the clock.  After a 10-yard Killian run gave his team one first down, Lake held the Toms to fourth and one on the Viking 30.  With the game on the line Joyner broke to the outside and zipped 30 yards untouched for the clinching touchdown.  40-28, with 1:10 left.

   Eason completed four passes in the remaining time, two to Rasmussen for 27 yards and two to Brown for 16 yards, the clock hitting zero with Lake on M-P’s 17 yard line.

B.A.P. Photography

Riley Krentz

   A packed house watched the offense-laden game, University of Washington head football coach Chris Petersen one of the spectators.  Some speculated that Petersen may have been unofficially scouting Joyner and/or Eason, despite those two having previously orally agreed to attend Washington State and Georgia, respectively.

   Eason finished 35 of 54 (no interceptions) for 375 yards, completing passes to seven different receivers (Krenz 12 catches for 113 yards and Gray seven catches for 129 yards).  Grimes was held to 88 net yards in 23 carries while Page netted 118 yards in 22 carries and Joyner 195 in 13 carries.  Marysville passed just twice, completing one, for seven yards.

   Lake held the overall yardage advantage 503 to 391 and the first down margin by 23 to 18.  Lake ran 81 offensive plays to M-P’s 48.

   Jones had a remarkable 22 tackles, followed by Michael Nelson’s 13.


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