Sprague far from lucky in Tigard’s first playoff game of the season on 11/11

By Megan King, Business Manager

With an amazing record of zero loses this season, Tigard went into its first playoff game excited to see if they could keep up the winning streak.

“We knew they were a champ team,” said senior Jarrad Shulte. “So we knew we had to go out and prove our defensive reputation.”

After an intense game full of penalties, interceptions, and amazing runs, the boys proved their talent with their tenth consecutive win, 56-21, against Sprague High School.

The game began with a tied score but the tigers got a quick touchdown bringing the score to 13-7. The kickoff lead to an immediate tackle at the 25 yard line. Sprague only pushed 5 yards before a tackle by senior Brandon Wick. In the next play, Sprague attempted a handoff to their running back who ran straight into senior Isaac Shimmles, getting no further. Tigard’s intense defensive line kept its opponent at the 55 yard line.

Senior Jesse Wantland made a great tackle. Head coach Craig Ruecker told the team to “watch the fake”, followed by a missed pass and kick by Sprague.

Both teams were dedicated to winning this game. After a seemingly intense round of play by Tigard, a large Sprague player carried three Tigard players a few yards, not giving up for anything. However, back on the 25 yard line, Tigard is not ready to give up this game.

The rest of the second quarter seemed to be at a standstill, as the ice-cold air made steam rise from their helmets. Sprague tied up the game once more to 14-14 by the end of the second quarter. However, Shimmels pushed a sprague player back 10 yards, making a touchdown a mere 10 yards away. Touchdown and then a field goal kicked by senior Travis Hale brought the score to 21-14.

Then, Wick intercepted a field long pass which took tigard back in its direction. By halftime, students decked out in their best camo gear cheer with all their might for their favorite team- the Tigers. As the boys run into the locker room, the ball boys practice their passes alongside the field.

“I like being a ball boy because I get to be on the field with all the players.” said ball boy Kellen Jolley.

The impact by these players is felt by all fans, big and small.

The start of the 2nd half proves the dedication by Tigard as the boys put in all their efforts to win this game. Tigard advanced just under the 10 yard line, followed by a touchdown, bringing the score to 28-14. A fumble by Sprague was scooped up by Shulte, putting Tigard on the offense once more. An amazing catch by Brandon Wick at the 15 yard line led to a touchdown run straight through the Sprague defensive line. The score now 35-14, Tigard proved once more their passion to win.

Another touchdown by Wick brought the score to 42-14. An intersection by Sprague gave them a touchdown, evening out the score to 42-21. However, a field length run by junior Kaz Greene gave tigard another touchdown, 49-21.

A faulty start by Sprague gave them a 5 yard penalty. A clean sweep tackle by junior Anthony Consolo brought a Sprague runningback off his feet. Then, an interception by senior Peter McCormick helped for another touchdown by defense senior Jeremy Moore. The score now 56-21, Sprague tried to come back with a quick play but was instead tackled by Tigard’s thick defense.

30 seconds left of the game had fans cheering, as they know Tigard has won the game. As the buzzer went off, everyone discussed how far this team has come.

“I love these guys,” says head coach Craig Ruecker.