Sports

Wildcats fall to future state champs, Bellevue

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BELLEVUE - Three-time state champs Bellevue High School rolled over Mount Si in football action last week 60-14.

Bellevue's star running back, J.R. Hasty, had a lot to do with the win racking up five touchdowns on 254 yards including a 74-yard kickoff return to start the second half. The Wildcats' Erik Tierney hauled in a pass in the end zone and Brandon Yakaboski had a reception for a touchdown in the second quarter for Mount Si scores.

The Wildcats' quarterback, Tyler Littlejohn, led the team on the field as Mount Si took the opening kick. Three and out and the punt team was on with Bellevue starting on their own 41-yard line.

On the first play from offense, the Wolverines' Eric Block went deep to Keith Rosenberg for a 59-yard touchdown reception. The extra point was missed, but the first of many touchdowns was on the scoreboard.

The second touchdown came with 5:16 left in the first quarter. Bellevue had gone to the air again, beating the Wildcats' secondary deep. From 1-yard out Hasty powered across the goal line. The extra point kick was good and Bellevue led 13-0.

The Wildcats' Rollin Smith came on in relief of Littlejohn at quarterback for the next series. Smith tried several pass plays, but without any receptions, the team was forced to punt. Cody Hyatt booted it deep and Bellevue returned it to the 26-yard line. It didn't take long for Hasty to add touchdown number two on the night as he busted loose from the 26 yard line and ran 74 yards for a touchdown. The extra point was good and the score stood at Bellevue 20, Mount Si nothing with 3:23 left in the first quarter.

The Wildcats' offense began to click, getting a first down with 1:50 left in the first quarter and moving near mid-field. But again the Wolverines' defense stalled the drive, forcing a punt.

Hasty nearly scored again but the play was called back by a holding penalty on the next Bellevue drive. Alez Grazda made a nice stop of Hasty in the backfield but two plays later, early in the second quarter, Block found teammate Ryan Lee in the corner of the end zone for another touchdown. The extra point was good and the Wolverines led 26-0.

Mount Si stepped up with a nice defensive play mid way through the second quarter. Grazda sat in the wings as Block threw a flat pass. Grazda stepped up, picked it off and ran to the Wolverines' 1-foot line. On third down, Eric Tierney jumped in the corner and pulled in a pass for the touchdown. Chris Brown added the extra point and Mount Si was on the scoreboard 26-7.

Starting from its own 37-yard line, it didn't take long for Bellevue to respond. Hasty once again punched his way into the middle of the line and found the end zone. The kick was good and they led 34-7.

Mount Si answered with a score of its own. The Wildcats found a weakness in the Bellevue defense when they sent Yakaboski in motion. Through plays by Stefan Marth and Tierney, the Wildcats had moved close to the Wolverine end zone. Moving on the slant pattern, Yakaboski snagged a Smith pass and rumbled into the end zone. Brown added the extra point for a 34-14 score.

Bellevue scored one more time with 40 seconds left on the clock. On a keeper, Block found the end zone. The extra point was blocked but Bellevue led at half 40-14.

The second half provided the Wildcats a glimmer of hope here and there as Marth and Eric Forslin combined for offensive yardage. But the half opened with Hasty taking the kick and returning it 74 yards for a touchdown. Mount Si answered with a well-formulated offensive plan of its own but an interception by Smith, deep in Wolverine territory, thwarted the drive and a chance to score. Seth Merritt took a hard hit to the knee in the drive and was taken away by ambulance. He suffered a knee sprain but due to swelling it was unknown as to the extent of his injuries. He will be out at least a week.

Hasty added another touchdown to his accomplishments with 6:11 left in the third quarter, his last of the night, this time from 28-yards out. The extra point pierced the uprights and Bellevue had a 54-14 lead.

With the Wolverines swapping out starting players for backups, they scored one more touchdown late in the game for the final score of 60-14.

"I would like to know what team in the country can beat that team," said head coach Charlie Kinnune. "They could call Cal Poly Long Beach and beat them."

When asked about Bellevue going to a passing game from the beginning, he answered: "In the eight years we have been playing them, they have come out with four long balls. We did as well as DeLasalle and definitely as well as the others. I think they got some chinks in their armor and I think we exploited some things."

But Kinnue was appreciative of the support the Wildcats' fans showed during a game that saw such a scoring spread between the teams.

"The kids and the coaches really felt a lot of support at the game," said Kinnune. "We were really pleased with how our fans rallied. We would love to have that continue through the rest of the season."

Kinnune was worried about the injuries sustained in the game as five Mount Si players were taped or bandaged with ice packs.

"We wanted to get out of this game without any injuries and it doesn't look like that happened," Kinnune said.

Mount Si plays Issaquah at Issaquah, Friday, Oct. 8. Game time is 7:30 p.m.

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