EDMONDS — Meadowdale High School’s offense got things going for the Mavericks early Friday night.
But it was the Mavs’ defense, one of the things they take the most pride in, that allowed them to dominate.
Meadowdale allowed just two completed passes and seven points — both coming late in the game — as the Mavericks cruised to a 30-7 3A Quad-District playoff win over Auburn on Friday night at Edmonds Stadium.
“I love our defense. I. Love. Our. Defense,” senior running/defensive back Rory Spillum said. “Meadowdale is definitely big on defense. We’ve been solid defensively for as long as I can remember — for as long as I’ve been watching Meadowdale football.”
Auburn quarterbacks Justin Ioimo and Nick Kaatz combined to go 2-for-13, with each getting a 35-yard completion. Meadowdale didn’t allow a completed pass until there was 4 minutes, 37 seconds to play in the game.
“That’s great defense,” Meadowdale coach Mike Don said. “Those last two drives (was) the only time (Auburn) moved the ball on us where we got some JV guys some reps. … It was great. I thought the defense played lights out tonight.”
The offense was equally as effective with a pair of big plays putting the Mavericks up early. Meadowdale quarterback Caleb Tingstad ran for a 55-yard touchdown and Spillum added a 46-yard score in the first quarter.
The Mavericks started to pile on in the second quarter. Charlie White blocked an Auburn punt in the end zone for a safety and then hauled in an 11-yard touchdown pass from Tingstad 23 seconds before halftime.
“I thought our kids came out prepared tonight,” Don said. “I thought we came out and played pretty good football, both offensively and defensively. We got back on track running the ball. I think we were able to establish the line of scrimmage. It was a lot of fun to go out there and start like that.”
Mavericks receiver Malik Braxton added a 59-yard score early in the third quarter to complete the scoring for Meadowdale.
“We saw a lot of cutback lanes,” Spillum said. “There were a lot of big holes that our O-line was making. We tried to own the line of scrimmage tonight and I think we did a pretty good job of it.”
Spillum led the Mavericks with 175 yards and the score on 24 carries. Tingstad finished 5-for-11 for 113 yards passing and added four carries for 60 yards.
“Rory’s a heck of a running back,” Don said. “He’s really made us more dynamic as an offense because we can run him at running back and now you have to keep an eye out on (Braxton) on the perimeter because he can do some things too.”
Ioimo scored on a 12 yard run with 4:31 to play in the game to record the lone score for the Trojans. The junior quarterback finished with 64 yards on 13 carries.
About the only thing that didn’t go Meadowdale’s way was a goal line stand by the Auburn defense in the second quarter. Meadowdale had three chances to get the ball into the end zone from the 1-yard line but couldn’t get past the Trojans.
However, after a three-and-out by Auburn, White blocked the punt, giving the Mavericks two points and the ball on the ensuing kick.
Don said finishing scoring opportunities is something Meadowdale will work on going forward.
“I think we’ve got to work on finishing,” Don said. “We got stood up on the goal line down there. We can’t have that happen against good teams. We’ve got to be able to finish drives. … We left some points on the board that we’ve got to get.”
The second half of the game also saw several penalties on both teams. Don acknowledged there were “a lot of ‘em,” but thinks his squad is experienced enough to handle the pressure of the playoffs.
“We made a run last year, these kids understand what it’s like to be in the playoffs,” Don said. “And we’re trying to make another one.”
Meadowdale will get a rematch with Eastside Catholic, which knocked the Mavericks out of the playoffs with a 21-16 win in a 3A state tournament game last season. Spillum said Meadowdale is “definitely” out for a little revenge against the Crusaders, who beat Arlington in a 3A Quad-District playoff game Friday night.
“We’ve seen them a lot, we know it’s going to be a good game,” Spillum said. “We’ve got to bring it.”
At Edmonds Stadium
Auburn 0 0 0 7 —7
Meadowdale 14 9 7 0 —30
M—Caleb Tingstad 55 run (Brett Schafer kick)
M—Rory Spillum 46 run (Schafer kick)
M—Safety, punt blocked in the end zone
M—Charlie White 11 pass from Tingstad (Schafer kick)
M—Malik Braxton 59 pass from Tingstad (Schafer kick)
A—Justin Ioimo 10 run (Caden Borden kick)
Records—Auburn 6-4. Meadowdale 8-2.