By DEREK WILEY
Of the Keizertimes
McNary figured it would get Sprague’s best, coming off an embarrassing loss to West Salem.
Combine that with the Celtics worst and the end was a 62-6 Olympians rout on Friday, Sept. 15.
“I’m sure they were embarrassed and pissed and I’m sure they had a very long challenging week of practice from their coaches,” McNary head coach Jeff Auvinen said. “We were the brunt of them being really good and we did not play well in any aspect. I don’t think we could have played worse.”
The Celtics received the ball first and went right down the field as quarterback Erik Barker and Jacob Jackson connected for a 28-yard gain. Runs by Lucas Garvey and Junior Walling got McNary to the Sprague 20-yard line but four consecutive incomplete passes resulted in a turnover on downs.
The Olympians needed only five plays to reach the end zone as running back Noah Mellen got to the edge of McNary’s defense and raced 67 yards down the sideline for the first score of the night.
The Celtics again moved the ball into Sprague territory but Barker was intercepted on a jump ball to Jose Solorio. Five plays later, Sprague was back in the end zone on a Mellen two-yard run.
After another Barker interception, a two-yard touchdown run by Michael Murphy gave the Olympians a 21-0 lead with 4:23 still remaining in the first quarter. Sprague quarterback Spencer Plant then connected with Zach Lovell to stretch the lead to 28-0.
With 30 seconds remaining in the first quarter, the Olympians added one more score on a 35-yard pass from Plant to Alek Altringer. Plant then found Altringer again for a 50-yard strike to put Sprague on top 42-0 less than a minute into the second quarter.
Altringer wasn’t done. On defense, the Sprague senior intercepted Barker and ran untouched to the end zone to extend the lead to 49-0.
The Olympians added one more touchdown, this time on the ground, to lead 55-0 with 5:04 remaining in the second quarter.
Sprague finished the first half with 176 yards rushing and 200 passing. The Olympians had seven plays of more than 25 yards.
“We didn’t get through blocks,” Auvinen said. “We didn’t keep any leverage. We didn’t do much of anything on defense, right. We tried lots of pressure. We tried a little bit of pressure. We tried man. We tried zone. It didn’t matter what we were running if the kids aren’t going to play. We just got it handed to us and we didn’t respond like we needed to.”
With 44 seconds remaining in the first half, Garvey fought his way into the end zone from the three-yard line for McNary’s only score of the game. The extra point was then blocked.
Mellen added his third rushing touchdown early in the third quarter to complete the scoring.
“Take nothing away from Sprague because they’re a good football team and they did not play like it the week before and our kids may have put too much into that,” Auvinen said.
McNary finished with 236 yards. Garvey had 42 yards on 19 carries. Barker completed 14 of 32 passes for 139 yards and three interceptions. Brayden Ebbs was his leading receiver with five catches for 45 yards.