Eagles get No. 4 seed in KingCo playoffs

November 4, 2008

By Christopher Huber

The Issaquah High School Eagles’ offensive efforts had anything but the desired effect Oct. 31 against Woodinville.

Despite the thick fog that settled over the field before the game, Woodinville held Issaquah, now 7-2, to just 81 total yards in a 21-0 win at Issaquah Stadium. 

As the sparse crowd gathered for the Halloween night battle for the third KingCo 4A playoff seed, the announcer recognized all the seniors playing their last regular season home game.

Both teams were 7-1 and hungry for the spot behind Skyline and Bothell. 

“It’s huge,” said Woodinville coach Wayne Maxwell. “We knew they’re a good, physical team but … you’ve got to match them.” 

Issaquah had to make do without lineman Kevin Degginger and wide receiver Brennan Miller due to injuries. Woodinville had struggled with its passing game recently.

“It was an old-fashioned butt-whoopin’,” Issaquah coach Chris Bennett said after the game. “We didn’t respond. There’s a lot of things we need to do if we want to be better for the playoffs.” 

Both teams knew they were headed to the playoffs, but Woodinville took the opportunity to show the seventh-ranked Eagles they could control the clock, force errors with tight defense and tire its defense.

“They beat us up front all game,” Bennett said. “We couldn’t tackle them.” 

The game started out slowly and sloppily. On each of their first drives, quarterbacks Tim Ip and Joey Bradley threw interceptions. 

The Issaquah defense came out hard, pressuring Ip and deflecting any pass he threw. The first quarter was a defensive game, with both teams struggling to get anything going offensively.

No one scored in the first. But Woodinville was driving from midfield to begin the second. Woodinville immediately broke loose when Matt Brumfield dashed to the Issaquah 4-yard line. That set up the touchdown and gave the Falcons the 7-0 lead. 

Issaquah began its next possession from its own 38 and showed some energy when running back Grant Gellatly broke out for a 33-yard run into Woodinville territory.

Issaquah went four plays with no success and gave it up on downs after the Falcon defense sacked Bradley on fourth-and-5.

“We came out flat,” Gellatly said. “We didn’t really focus and it showed. We couldn’t find any rhythm and we just broke down as a unit.” 

The Eagle defense held its own against the pass game, but struggled to contain the constant bombardment up the left side and the center by running backs Brumfield and Jordan Todesco. 

With nothing working on offense, Issaquah relied on its defense to quell the Falcons. It worked for a while — Issaquah trailed just 7-0 at halftime — but Woodinville had gained nearly 190 yards offense to the Eagles’ 53. 

Even though Woodinville didn’t get any big plays, it ate away at the clock all game, especially in the second half. 

After Issaquah punted on its first possession in the third, the Falcons took most of the third to drive 71 yards for the second touchdown of the game. 

The Issaquah crowd became more subdued with its team down 14-0, but the student section kept the spirit alive. 

The final score for Woodinville came just 40 seconds into the fourth quarter. On first-and-15, Todesco churned up the middle 43 yards, untouched, into the end zone. 

In the end, Woodinville racked up 388 yards in total offense and sent Issaquah into the locker room wondering how it will tweak its game plan for the first round of the playoffs this week.  

“They took us to the woodshed and let us have it,” Bennett said.

Reach Reporter Christopher Huber at 392-6434, ext. 242, or chuber@isspress.com.

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