Archbishop Murphy eventually pulls away from King's | Football

By David Pan | Sep 22, 2017
Photo by: David R Pan Archbishop Murphy senior running back Ben Hines is tackled by King's Levi Bundrant during a Cascade Conference game Friday, Sept. 15, at Archbishop Murphy High School's Tennis Ennis Stadium.

Archbishop Murphy didn’t play its best game against King’s in both teams’ Cascade Conference football opener.

But the Wildcats did enough on both sides of the ball to defeat the Knights 35-7 Friday, Sept. 15, at Archbishop Murphy High School’s Terry Ennis Stadium.

The game was closer than the score indicated, as the Wildcats (1-0 in the league, 3-0 overall) only led 14-0 at halftime and headed into the fourth quarter with a 21-7 advantage.

“It’s satisfying to have a win against King’s, as it always is,” senior running back Ray Pimentel said. “But we came out a little lackadaisical, thinking it was going to be easy and they gave us a good game.”

Archbishop Murphy was called for 11 penalties that amounted to 94 yards, most on the offensive side. After scoring 37 points against Garfield and 54 points against Bishop Blanchet, the Wildcat offense had only three touchdowns against King’s (0-1, 0-3).

“It’s tough when you get into a game like that and you have as many penalties as we did have, to get into a flow,” Archbishop Murphy coach Jerry Jensen said. “I think it was a meaningful check for our boys and our coaches too.”

Jensen also wondered if the players might have been looking ahead to this week’s match-up with Bellevue.

“King’s is a well-coached team that is disciplined and they play us tough every single year and with Bellevue sitting out there … I wonder what the focus was,” Jensen said. “King’s came out and played well. They put us, put our kids on notice.”

Archbishop Murphy took a 7-0 led on a 20-yard touchdown pass from sophomore quarterback Victor Gabalis to wide receiver Dillon Singh Halpin. Late in the second quarter, the Knights blocked a field goal attempt and took over the ball deep in their own territory.

The Wildcats’ defense then forced a fumble and John Land-Quinn returned the ball nine yards for a touchdown and a 14-0 halftime lead.

King’s sophomore quarterback Luke Marion threw a 7-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Max Lane to cut the deficit to 14-7 in the third quarter.

Archbishop Murphy responded with a 12-yard TD run by Pimentel and headed into the final period with a 21-7 lead.

The Wildcats scored a couple of late touchdowns in the fourth quarter. With the Knights focused on trying to stop the Wildcats from getting a first down, senior running back Ben Hines broke through the line and ran 40 yards for a touchdown. Archbishop Murphy’s Colin Guy then recovered a fumble on the subsequent kickoff and returned it 15 yards for the final touchdown.

Marion, who was knocked out of the game during a scramble, completed 16 of 22 passes for 152 yards and one touchdown with one interception.

“They were able to move the ball on us,” Jensen said. “When they got into the red zone, we were able to stiffen up a little bit and they made some mistakes down there. We’ve got to tighten things up on both ends of the ball.”

Archbishop Murphy’s offense suffered a blow when senior running back Kyler Gordon left the game with a leg injury during the first offensive series. The Wildcats turned to Pimentel, who rushed for 195 yards on 27 carries, and Hines, who had 122 yards on 11 carries. Gabalis completed five of 10 passes for 81 yards.

Archbishop Murphy hosts Bellevue at 7 p.m., Friday Sept. 22 in a non-conference game.

“Our team is just going to have to step it up during practice,” Pimental said. “We’re going to have to make sure that everything is going crisp.”



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