Skyline football blanks Issaquah
October 24, 2012
By John Leggett
Whatever Skyline heard during halftime of their Oct. 19 game against Issaquah, must have gotten their attention.
After scoring only a single touchdown during the first half, the gritty green and white warriors of Skyline returned to their usual dominating selves, bringing the partisan crowd to its feet on more than one occasion.
Time of possession was lopsided in favor of the Spartans to say the least as they hogged the pigskin for 20 of the 24 second half minutes.
Issaquah’s primary source of offensive output, junior running back Jack Gellatly, rolled up his customary 100 plus yards on the ground, but ran unencumbered only between the 20s as Issaquah failed to approach kicker Alex Shane’s field goal range.
“We just aren’t a good enough team yet to overcome mental mistakes, turnovers, or other impediments along the way, especially against a team like Skyline,” said affable Issaquah coach Chris Bennett.
Bennett quickly added that Eagle followers needed to realize that neighboring Skyline is not unbeaten by accident.
“You’ve got to remember that Skyline is a well-coached, disciplined and fundamentally sound football team that has been blowing its enemies out all season long. Unless I am mistaken…I don’t think that any other team they’ve played this season has held them to seven points in the first half,” Bennett said.
Holding on to the ball was key to victory, according to Skyline coach Mat Taylor.
“I really feel like the drive we managed during our initial possession in the first quarter, capped off by the Browne two yard touchdown plunge, and the drive right after halftime, were instrumental in tonight’s triumph over Issaquah,” said Taylor, who was soaked to the skin but smiling after the convincing conquest.
“Those scoring marches were both long, sustained drives, that took a lot of time off the clock and kept the football out of Issaquah’s offense’s hands. That drive that came just into the second half enabled us to sort of re-establish ourselves and determine the tempo for the remainder of the game,” opined Taylor.
The Spartans played keep away, maintaining possession of the ball for nearly eight minutes in that third quarter, culminating the second lengthy scoring drive of the night with an 18-yard touchdown scamper by fleet footed senior tailback Cedric Cooper.
In the fourth quarter, Skyline scored its third and final touchdown of the clash when senior back Matt Sinatro snagged a dart on a rope from Browne and racked up six more points toward the cause on a 5-yard pass.
Skyline kicker Sean McDonald split the uprights with his third extra point of the night and that represented the final point being scored, although Skyline probably could have scored again on a drive that burned up the game’s last five minutes.
Skyline was on the threshold of scoring again as it reached Issaquah’s red zone with two minutes remaining, but Taylor showed a touch of class as he instructed Browne to take a knee at the Issaquah 15 three times as the last few grains of sand slipped through the hourglass.
This week, Skyline heads to the KingCo 4A championship at Bothell, 7 p.m. Oct. 25.
Reach reporter John Leggett at firstname.lastname@example.org. To comment on this story, visit www.SammamishReview.com.