Olympia wins 19-14 to finish Knights’ hopes of a state title

By Aaron Coe

Herald Writer

EVERETT — Kamiak’s dream of a state championship was abruptly ended by the Olympia Bears Saturday night at Goddard Stadium.

Olympia held off a late rally by the Knights and walked off Kamiak’s home field with a 19-14 upset in the first round of the 4A state football playoffs.

The loss stunned a Kamiak senior class that lost only its fifth game in three years.

"Disappointing," said Kamiak quarterback Johnny Mack, who completed 12 of 16 passes for 175 yards and a touchdown. "We had the talent to win it all."

Olympia (9-1) will play Kentwood next weekend in a state quarterfinal. Kamiak’s season ended with a record of 9-2.

"You don’t win the state championship when your last game is a loss," said Kamiak coach Dan Mack, whose team played in a semifinal game last season and a quarterfinal in 1999. "And that’s tough. I’m very proud of the way our seniors played tonight. Olympia played a good game."

Johnny Mack, who completed his last nine passes, pulled Kamiak to the final five-point margin with a 5-yard TD pass to Taylor Wade with 4:19 left in the game.

The Knights needed a relatively quick stop on defense, but Olympia sophomore running back Luke Kravitz would not cooperate. The 6-foot, 185-pound runner, who rushed for 118 yards on 21 carries, ran the ball on seven of Olympia’s last 10 plays as the Bears ran out the clock.

"He’s got good vision, and he gets yards after contact," Dan Mack said. "As a coach that’s what you like to see."

The Knights showed glimpses of the greatness they displayed much of the season, but several promising drives ended without points being scored. Kamiak began both halves with deep drives that ran 5 1/2 minutes off the clock, but fumbled the ball away on one drive and turned the ball over on downs on the other.

The Knights trailed 12-0 after three quarters, but David Eneberg made it 12-7 with an 18-yard TD run on the first play of the fourth quarter. Mack completed all four of his pass attempts during the drive and it seemed the Knights were beginning to seize some momentum.

Olympia, however, accomplished two major goals on its next drive: The Bears scored and they did it by using up valuable time. They took 4:55 off the clock while driving 65 yards, and Kravitz capped the drive by breaking four tackles on his way to a 14-yard TD run and a 19-7 Olympia lead with 6:49 left in the game.

The long drive left Kamiak with very little time to score a pair of touchdowns against an Olympia team that used its large, physical line to control the tempo during much of the evening.

Mack and his receivers did their parts, as the 6-1, 190-pound quarterback began an 87-yard drive with a 29-yard completion to tight end Jamaul Jackson. Mack completed all three of his passes during the drive, including a 24-yard sideline pass to wide receiver Whitney Wilson. Wilson caught three passes for 70 yards in the game. The final completion of Mack’s career was the 5-yard TD to Wade with 4:19 left. Jackson caught four for 70 yards in the game.

Olympia’s burly line did a solid job against Kamiak’s run offense, which featured four backs who averaged better than 8-yards per carry during the season. The Knights were held to 105 yards on the ground, compared to 205 for the Bears.

"I look at David (Eneberg), who I’ve played with since grade school, and that’s all we dreamed of was going to state and winning it," said Kamiak running back Justin Washington, who managed 32 yards on 11 carries. "We fell short. It’s painful."

Both teams had promising first drives, but came up empty. Olympia drove to the Kamiak 34, but Nate Santiago intercepted a third-down pass. Kamiak then drove for 5 1/2 minutes to the Olympia 22, but a fourth-down pass fell incomplete.

Olympia took a 6-0 lead with 7:32 remaining in the half via a Kravitz 4-yard plunge that capped a 73-yard drive.

Washington intercepted an Olympia pass in Kamiak territory and returned it to midfield with 5:39 left before halftime, but Kamiak went three-and-out. The Knights forced Olympia to punt after three plays, but mishandled the punt and gave the ball right back to Olympia.

The Bears held Kamiak’s offense to just 67 yards in the first half. Olympia managed 139 yards, including five of eight competitions for 66 yards by Reid Hamblet in the half. Hamblet finished the game 10-for-14 for 133 yards.

Kamiak began the second half as it did the first, driving for 5 1/2 minutes, but turning it over deep in Olympia territory.

The Bears took advantage of the turnover, and mixed runs and passes to drive 77 yards and take a 12-0 lead with 3:05 remaining in the third.


Olympia

0

6

6

7

19

Kamiak

0

0

0

14

14


Olympia—Kravitz 4 run (kick failed)

Olympia—Long 13 pass from Hamblet (pass failed)

Kamiak—Eneberg 18 run (Leach kick)

Olympia—Kravitz 14 run (Dickey kick)

Kamiak—Wade 5 pass from Mack (Leach kick)

Records—Olympia 9-1 overall. Kamiak 9-2.

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