EDMONDS — When Meadowdale has needed a big play in the pass game this season, the Mavericks have often leaned on Mason Vaughn to provide.
“It feels like Mason Vaughn only catches touchdowns,” said Meadowdale coach James Harmon with a laugh. “He really has only caught two or three balls this year that weren’t touchdowns. He was gigantic for us.”
Vaughn added two more catches Friday night against Shorecrest in a pivotal late-season Wesco 3A South matchup, and both times the senior receiver wound up in the end zone.
Vaughn’s two scores were part of several big plays that keyed a 20-14 league win over the Scots at Edmonds Stadium.
The win snapped Shorecrest’s four-game win streak and helped the Mavericks (5-2, 4-1 Wesco 3A South) keep pace in a tight Wesco 3A South postseason race.
Vaughn caught TD passes of 29 and 47 yards and was responsible for a large part of a Meadowdale offense that didn’t consistently move the ball against Shorecrest. Between seven Maverick ball-carriers, not one surpassed 30 yards rushing, but to counter, the Mavs’ defense limited a Shorecrest offense that had scored a combined 78 points over the past two weeks.
Hulking senior defensive lineman Alexander Krueger was critical in shutting down the Scots’ run game, and Tristan Ahlstedt and Jacob Wezenberg intercepted Shorecrest quarterback Eladio Fountain in critical second-half moments.
Fountain, after completing only one first-half pass, finished with 201 yards, two TDs and two interceptions for the Scots (5-2, 3-2).
Both teams started the game slow.
After a first quarter featuring five punts, Meadowdale got creative to set up its opening score. A 28-yard inside running back screen pass from Hunter Moen to Caleb Monillas gave the Mavs a first-and-goal on the Shorecrest 1-yard line. Saul Hernandez, on the following play, plunged across the goal line and gave Meadowdale a 7-0 lead with 11:03 to play in the second quarter.
An impressive 29-yard juggling catch by Vaughn extended the Mavericks’ lead to 13-0 with 2:52 remaining until halftime. On a third-and-8 from Shorecrest’s 29, Moen heaved a pass into the back of the end zone into double coverage, but Vaughn managed to pull the ball down.
Shorecrest managed just 36 total yards of first-half offense, but rode the pass game during the second half and trimmed the lead to 13-7 on a 10-yard TD pass from Fountain to Derreck Williams with 7:20 to play in the third quarter.
Meadowdale responded late in the third when Vaughn struck again, this time outdueling a shorter Shorecrest cornerback on a deep ball that went for a 47-yard TD pass with 0:49 remaining in the third. The score pushed the Mavs’ lead to 20-7.
Fountain engineered a late fourth-quarter scoring drive that was capped by a 16-yard touchdown pass to Williams with 4:42 left to play. The touchdown brought the score to 20-14.
Shorecrest had a chance at a game-winning drive with under two minutes left, but Meadowdale’s Alain Bui recovered a Fountain fumble near midfield to secure the Mavericks’ win.
Mason Vaughn, Meadowdale — The Mavericks’ offense struggled sustaining drives and needed someone to make big plays. Vaughn provided a solution, catching two pass for 76 yards and two scores.
Derreck Williams, Shorecrest — The senior receiver breathed some life into the Scots’ passing game during the second half, finishing with six receptions for 73 yards and two touchdowns.
Alexander Krueger, Meadowdale — The 6-foot-4, 290-pound senior lineman was a can’t-miss player along the Mavericks’ defensive line. Shorecrest’s run game struggled all night, and Krueger was a key reason.
PLAY OF THE GAME
Both of Vaughn’s touchdown catches were impressive, but the first-half 29-yarder gets the nod. With nowhere to go on a third-and-8, Moen just heaved a pass toward the back of Shorecrest’s end zone into double coverage. That didn’t bother Vaughn, as the wideout managed to get his hands on the ball and make a juggling TD catch as he went to the ground.
Meadowdale travels to play Snohomish at 7 p.m. next Friday at Veterans Memorial Stadium, while Shorecrest hosts Lynnwood at the same time and date at Edmonds Stadium.