B-11 Title Game: Reardan wraps up triple crown
By Craig Smith
Seattle Times staff reporter
TACOMA — In a high-suspense game that wasn’t decided until the final play, Reardan held off DeSales 14-10 to win the Class B-11 football championship Saturday.
The win gave Reardan (11-1) its third title in the past four years and made top-ranked DeSales (12-2) the second team in state history in any classification to lose three consecutive championship games. The Irish join Brewster, which lost B-11 titles from 1974 to 1976.
“It feels the same way it’s felt the last two times,” said DeSales senior Jack Dickson, who has played quarterback in all three championship games. “It hurts.”
Wide receiver Casey Worth said, “It’s the worst feeling in the world to lose three straight, especially this one because it’s my senior year and we had it. We just couldn’t come up with the big play.”
The loss also was the fourth in five years for DeSales, a Catholic school in Walla Walla.
Fourth-ranked Reardan took the lead with 1:39 to play on a 9-yard run by junior Jon Jayne to cap a 55-yard drive that started after he intercepted a pass. Jayne kept the drive alive by converting on fourth-and-two at the Reardan 27.
Jayne had fumbled on the previous series.
“That was horrible,” he said. “I screwed it up and I had to get it back for the team.”
DeSales wasn’t done after Reardan took the late-game lead. The Irish used a double-pass trick play — from Dickson to Casey Worth to Michael Richard to advance 48 yards to the Reardan 9 in the final minute.
Two incompletions and a sack set up the final play of the game, and Dickson tried to hit Trevor Buckley at the back of the end zone, but he was well-covered by Jayne and Chance Ackerman as time expired.
“My heart was in my throat,” said winning coach Eric Nikkola.
This matchup between DeSales and Reardan, a farming community outside Spokane, was a rematch of the 2003 championship game won by Reardan 13-3.
DeSales took its first lead, 9-6, with 7:15 left in the third quarter on a 23-yard, fourth-down pass from Dickson to Worth, who also kicked the extra point for a 10-6 lead.
Worth appeared well-covered by Brad Alberts but the pass was underthrown. Worth put himself in reverse, caught the ball as Alberts went sailing past and was all alone as he stepped into the end zone.
The low-scoring game started with an easy Reardan touchdown. Bob Christerson ended a four-play, 58-yard drive with a 14-yard run around right end. The extra-point kick was blocked.
Things got tougher after that. In the second quarter, Reardan lost the ball on downs at the DeSales 17 and got to the 9 on another drive that ended with a fourth-down sack of quarterback Eric Everett by Jake Moore and Ryan Hawkins.
DeSales cut the lead to 6-3 with 1:15 left in the half on a 20-yard field goal by Worth. Freshman running back Bryce Hayunga had runs of 13, 17 and 20 yards on the drive and finished with 113 yards on 21 carries.