Arlington junior Kaid Hunter runs into the end zone for a second quarter score against Ballard during a playoff matchup Friday, Nov. 3, 2023, at Arlington High School in Arlington, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Arlington junior Kaid Hunter runs into the end zone for a second quarter score against Ballard during a playoff matchup Friday, Nov. 3, 2023, at Arlington High School in Arlington, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Arlington lights up Ballard en route to 3A state playoff berth

Caleb Reed piles up 190 yards and Leyton Martin throws for 5 TDs in a winner-to-state rout.

ARLINGTON — Dominant wins have been a long-running habit for the Arlington High School football team this fall, and in a high-stakes winner-to-state setting, the Eagles kept rolling in a Class 3A Week 10 playoff meeting against Ballard.

Arlington delivered a 54-13 beatdown over the visiting Beavers of the Metro Mountain League on Friday, punching a ticket into the state playoffs next week.

“It’s so exciting,” 16th-year head coach Greg Dailer said. “We set it as a goal to get to the state playoffs and win a state playoff game, which we haven’t done since I’ve been here. So, we’re really excited to be there and we just gotta take that next step.”

The Eagles usual high-powered offense shined through again, and junior running back Caleb Reed saved one of his best performances of the season when it mattered most.

Reed bulldozed his way to 190 yards on 20 carries, adding an 8-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter.

Reed’s first-quarter bursts of 20, 22 and 27 yards helped the Eagles (10-0) set up a pair of field goals from senior Aidan Raney from 25 and 44 yards out, and his production on the ground opened up Arlington’s patented passing game as the Eagles lit up the scoreboard in the second frame.

“We felt like we were bigger and better up front,” Dailer said. “And Caleb’s such a strong runner, and the O-line blocked fantastic once we got things going. That first quarter we were stalled a couple of times heading into the redzone.”

Junior quarterback Leyton Martin was at it again, supplying 253 passing yards on a 20-for-28 night. He tossed five touchdown to four different receivers without an interception.

Martin darted a throw to senior Stevie Balderas for a 22-yard catch-and-run for the game’s first TD at the 7:58 mark in the second, capping off a six-play, 85-yard drive to give Arlington a 13-0 lead.

After Ballard struck back on a 21-yard TD pass from Joe Farley to John Henry Boxwell to make it 13-7, Martin found Jake Willis for a 20-yard score with 3:43 before the half. The junior finished with eight grabs for 156 receiving yards.

After forcing a punt, Arlington stormed back on the other end. Martin hit Willis for a 42-yard catch down the sidelines and targeted junior wideout Kaid Hunter for a 12-yard score with 42 seconds before intermission.

After building a 26-7 first-half lead, the Eagles kept their foot on the gas in the second half.

Senior Jeremy Fleming ended a fourth-down try from the Beavers with a sack, and Martin pinpointed Chase Deberry for a 24-yard TD grab as the Eagles took a commanding 33-7 lead with 6:28 left in the third.

Martin found Deberry for his second TD with 10:35 remaining in the fourth period on a 17-yard toss. Reed pushed through for his lone rushing score on the Eagles’ following drive at the 6:48 mark.

“We know Caleb can run and score,” Arlington offensive lineman Willem Van Dongen said. “We just had to come together as a group and trust each other up front, that was the biggest thing. We’ll make the plays, we’ll do what we need to do. … The line is one big family, as long as we all play how we need to play, we should be solid.”

With 5:06 left in the contest, senior defensive back Kaleb Adams gave the Eagles a nice walk-off, corralling a fumble in the red zone and jetting it back 80 yards for a touchdown to put the finishing touch on the victory.

As Arlington awaits its seeding in next week’s round of 16 state playoffs, the competition will get stouter as the Eagles seek a deep postseason run.

“There are no more bad teams left,” Dailer said. “We’re gonna get matched up with a really good team next week and we’re gonna prepare and get ready for ‘em.”

Talk to us

> Give us your news tips.

> Send us a letter to the editor.

> More Herald contact information.

More in Sports

Shorewood’s Emily Lin hits the ball during a Class 3A District 1 girls tennis tournament at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington on Wednesday, May 15, 2024. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
2024 All-Wesco girls tennis teams

Here are the 2024 All-Wesco girls tennis teams. Teams are chosen by… Continue reading

Archbishop Murphy senior Cole Balen poses for a photo after winning the Class 2A boys singles title at the Nordstrom Tennis Center in Seattle on May 25, 2024. Balen never dropped a set in any of his four matches and was the only Snohomish County competitor to win first place this season. (Photo courtesy Kathy Kenny)
Baseline-hitting Balen: Murphy’s first state tennis champion

After placing seventh in doubles last year, Balen claimed the singles title without dropping a set.

Jackson High School freshman Chanyoung Park won the Class 4A state girls golf championship last Tuesday and Wednesday in Spokane. (Photo courtesy of Jerome Gotz)
Jackson’s Park caps spectacular frosh season with state title

Chanyoung Park eagled the final hole to clinch the Class 4A state girls golf championship.

Vote for The Herald’s Prep Athlete of the Week for May 20-26

The Athlete of the Week nominees for May 20-26. Voting closes at… Continue reading

Head coach Pete Carroll of the Seattle Seahawks, right, celebrates with General Manager John Schneider at the end of Super Bowl XLVIII at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J., on Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014. The Seattle Seahawks defeated the Denver Broncos, 43-8. (Lionel Hahn/Abaca Press/MCT)
Seahawks mailbag: Is there more pressure on John Schneider?

Plus an examination on how many Seattle draft picks played out their four-year rookie contracts.

Champion Johnny Carey tees off during the 93rd Annual Snohomish County Amateur Championship on Monday, May 27, 2024, at the Everett Golf and Country Club in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Johnny Carey claims his first Snohomish County Amateur title

The Kamiak High School grad edges Snohomish High School senior Palmer Mutcheson by one stroke.

Seattle Kraken announce Dan Bylsma as new head coach

Bylsma, a former NHL head coach and Stanley Cup winner, has been coaching Seattle’s AHL affiliate.

Glacier Peak’s Mateo Ganje wins the Boys 200M 4A dash during the Class 4A, 3A, 2A track and field state championships at Mount Tahoma High School in Tacoma, Washington on Saturday, May 25, 2024. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
State track: Glacier Peak’s Mateo Ganje claims 200 gold

Ganje, Everett jumper Shukurani Ndayiragije each take home three top-three medals.

The Jackson softball team poses with the Class 4A state tournament trophy after a 10-1 triumph over Emerald Ridge Saturday, May 25 at Columbia Playfield in Richland, WA. (Aaron Coe / The Herald).
Domination: Jackson repeats as 4A state softball champion

The Yanina Sherwood-led Timberwolves top Emerald Ridge 10-1 in the title game.

Is Mariners slugger Julio Rodriguez about to break out?

Sunday’s performance may be a good omen for the Seattle slugger, who’s been mired in a slump.

Snohomish’s Hannah Siegler becomes emotional after striking out in the final inning of the 3A state softball championship game against Auburn Riverside on Saturday, May 25, 2024 in Lacey, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Snohomish softball falls in 3A state championship game

The Panthers lose 11-6 to Auburn Riverside, marking their second straight championship-game defeat.

State roundup: Murphy’s Balen, Jackson boys win tennis titles

Grace Academy’s Pearce Hess sweeps the sprints in the Class 1B boys track and field meet.

Support local journalism

If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.