The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Andrew Christiansen

Wolves stun homecoming crowd with 21 points in final 5 minutes for 35-31 win over Warriors


Andrew Christiansen

MAGIC: Bryce Wilkins runs through a tackle for the game winning touchdown at Cle Elum. It was the perfect call. After 13 straight passing plays the Goldendale quarterback ran it in from the 5-yard line as the Timberwolves scored three touchdowns in the fourth quartet for a 35-31. win.

Goldendale's Bryce Wilkins ran the final 5-yards to cap an improbable come-back win over Cle Elum-Roslyn, Friday in Cle Elum. The 35-31 win gives the Timberwolves a 3-1 league record and a shot at one of the three playoff spots in the SCAC west.

Goldendale trailed 31-14 at the start of the fourth quarter and it would only get worse. A drive that started at the Goldendale 40, at the end of the third quarter, came to a halt when Wilkins was sacked on fourth down at the Cle Elum-Roslyn 14-yard line. On their next possession, Wilkins was intercepted, giving the Warriors the ball at the Goldendale 30. But, the Timberwolf defense finally found the solution to shutting down the potent Warrior running game and got the ball back at the Goldendale 22-yard line with 4:45 left in the game.

On second down, Wilkins hit Logan Boardman on a slant and let the senior sprinter do the rest. Boardman outran Cle Elum-Roslyn's Emanuel Sanchez for a 78-yard touchdown. Mr. Reliable, Mitchell Bane kicked the extra point, but Goldenadale was still 10 points down with 4:27 left.

Coach Chris Hill used his time-outs to best effect after a failed on-side kick gave the Warriors the ball at their 43-yard line. Cle Elum-Roslyn used a double wing attack with the speedy Sanchez in motion. Throughout the first half, Sanchez picked up big yardage on that play. And even though Goldendale figured out that when the opposite wing man was in motion, it would be a quarterback keeper, Dalton Hawk was able to run up the middle without contact for big yardage. With the game on the line, that formula did not work. Sanchez was held to 2-yards, then Hawk for 3-yards. Goldendale used two time-outs and still had 4:10 on the clock. On third down, Sanchez was forced out-of-bounds and a punt gave Goldendale the ball at their 19-yard line.

The Wilkins-Boardman connection hit again for 39 yards, this time down the sidelines with Hawk holding onto Boardman all the way downfield. A 15 yard penalty put the ball at the 27-yard line. On the next play, Wilkins found Grant Gunkel for a 27-yard touchdown.

A second on-side kick also failed and Cle Elum-Roslyn had the ball at their 39-yard line with 3:21 left. Hawk picked up 8-yards on second down and one more on third before Hill used his final time-out at 1:48. The Warriors elected to go with Hawk up the middle again on fourth down, but the line held and Hawk had no gain.

The improbable suddenly seemed possible. Wilkins missed on two throws to Boardman. In obvious passing mode, Cle Elum-Roslyn tried to pressure the Timberwolf quarterback, but the line gave Wilkins time to throw and he hit Mark Briggs over the middle for 22 yards. Wilkins spiked the ball to stop the clock with 1:24 left. He found Gunkel again on second down and spiked the ball with 1:09 left at the Warriors' 5-yard line. A second down throw was just out of Gunkel's reach in the end zone. That led to the Wilkins keeper behind the right side of the line for the game winner.

The game was one of adjustments and perseverance by Goldendale. Cle Elum-Roslyn was able to move the ball easily in the first half. Their first possession ended on a missed field goal. They got the ball back on a punt and Goldendale quickly discovered they were in for a battle as Sanchez picked up the ball in a crowd and somehow scampered around the field and was gone like a shot for a 60-yard touchdown. The Hawk and Sanchez show alternated for 44 yards with Hawk scoring on a 3-yard run on the first play of the second quarter to make it 14-0.

Goldendale answered the high scoring second quarter with a Boardman kick return to the Cle Elum-Roslyn 23-yard line. On the first play from scrimmage, Charles Hicks scooted 23 yards for the touchdown. Sanchez was back on the board, scoring from 16 yards for a 20-7 lead. With 1:44 left in the half, Goldendale got a bit of luck when the rush pushed the center back into Wilkins who held onto the ball and escaped around the left end for a 24-yard touchdown. Goldendale stiffened against a passing attack and forced the Warriors to settle for a 23-yard field goal at the end of the half.

Sanchez had 85-yards rushing and Hawk had 68 in the first half. They combined for just 43 in the second half as Goldendale's defense adjusted. The Timberwolf running was sporadic with two big gains to get them to 85 first half yards and nothing big in the second half as they went to a passing game.

Wilkins had a rough start throwing the ball, going 0-5 with an interception in the first half. He never quit. At one point in the second half, Wilkins had five straight incompletions plus another interception. But, he was five for his last 11, including two spikes and finished the game with 226 yards passing.

Goldendale will host Naches Valley this Friday at 7 p.m. The Rangers are currently 2-2 and in fourth place. They finish the season against winless Highland, making this week's game key in determining who makes it into the top three. The second place team, La Salle (4-1), plays at River View this week and then hosts Goldendale in the finale, Oct. 30. League-leader, Zillah, is 5-0 and plays their final game against Granger, Friday.

Andrew Christiansen

STOPPED: Jesse Bartkowski tackles Cle Elum-Roslyn's Blake Lemoine.

Goldendale 0 - 14 – 0 – 21 35

Cle Elum-Roslyn 7 – 16 – 8 – 0 31

Rushing: Goldendale – Wilkins 9-42, Boardman 8-32, Hicks 3-26, McCoy 9-25, Anthony Reese 2-13. Warriors – Hawk 23-107, Sanchez 17-89, Nolan Wait 2-5, Cameron May 3-2, Blake Lemoine 1- (-2). Passing: Goldendale – Wilkins 9-26-2-226. Warriors – Hawk 8-17-0-148. Receiving: Goldendale – Boardman 4-144, Gunkel 2-48, Briggs 2-36, Hicks 1- (-2). Warriors – Lemoine 4-73, Sanchez 3-66, Brooks Norrish 1-9.


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