PORTLAND – After the first quarter of Friday’s 5A state playoff game between the Lebanon Warriors and Parkrose Broncos it looked like a defensive battle had begun.
The Broncos held a 7-0 lead after scoring on a 30-yard pass from quarterback Tre Singleton to Jay Jay Hudson late in the quarter. The Broncos added to that lead midway through the second quarter on a 15-yard run by Singleton.
That set up one of the crucial plays in the game. The Broncos (7-2) gambled on an onside kick, which they recovered. Soon after, Taydrian Jackson broke free for a 49-yard gain that helped the Broncos to a 22-0 lead en route to a 59-20 victory.
For the Broncos, who are coached by former University of Oregon player Keanon Lowe, this was the first state playoff win in the program’s history.
"We felt like we had a pretty good plan going into it," said Lebanon head coach Ty Tomlin. "Bottom line, I felt like their kids made plays in space and we had guys there, they just didn't make the plays. That's really what the game comes down to. When you have the opportunity to make a play, you've got to make the play."
The Warriors (6-4) answered back late in the first half on a keeper by quarterback Cole Weber.
In the third quarter, Parkrose extended its lead to 29-7 on the second of Singleton’s four touchdown passes.
Once again, the Warriors rallied back midway through the quarter as Weber found Dane Sipos on a 37-yard touchdown pass, narrowing the score to 29-13.
That score held until Singleton made a key defensive play for the Broncos early in the fourth quarter. Dropping back into the middle of the field, Singleton intercepted a Weber pass and returned in 27 yards for a touchdown. The two-point conversion gave the Broncos a 37-13 lead.
"We were out there, lined up and they called timeout. I was feeling really confident about the call and that's just going to be one Cole (Weber) will want back. We talked about it, they're probably going to jump Keith (Brown) because he's our playmaker on that. I want you to be looking for Dane (Sipos) over the top and if nothing else its incomplete, it's third down and we'll get another opportunity," Tomlin said. "Cole came off and said 'I just thought I could jam it in there' ... It's one of those mistakes he rarely makes. Cole has been a really good quarterback for us and that's one he's disappointed about."
Brown tallied the final score for the Warriors in the fourth quarter, scoring on a 14-yard run.
Brown led the Warriors with 123 yards rushing on 10 attempts. Brock Barrett added 55 yards on nine carries.
Parkrose will face Crater, a 49-0 winner over Hillsboro, in the 5A quarterfinals.
For the Warriors the game caps an eventful four-year run for this senior class. Tomlin said this class was small from the outset, with only 13 players showing up at first for freshman football. In-school recruiting helped boost that number to 21. The freshman team went 1-7 that year, but the players continued to work and eventually made a contribution to a program that has become an annual contender at the 5A level. Eleven seniors made it through the end of their run.
"It's a testament to those kids having a small group, sticking with it, grinding through the ups and downs for four years of football," Tomlin said.
Among the key leaders in the senior class are Gatlyn Anderson, Landon Kisling and Brock Barrett. Anderson had a strong year as an offensive and defensive lineman, while Kisling and Barrett were part of a deep rotation of ball carriers who also played important roles as linebackers.
"He's one of the quickest kids off the ball, one of the toughest," Tomlin said of Anderson. "He was second on our team in tackling and that's amazing for a D-lineman."
Looking ahead, the Warriors have a talented, experienced group returning next season led by skill position players Weber, Sipos and Brown, who are each juniors. In addition, sophomores such as Waylon Wolfe, Austin Dalton and Brayden Burton earned valuable playing time.
"Looking at our travel roster, we had about 46 and we have 36 of these kids coming back. A lot of those could be contributors for us if we can not live on the laurels of what we've done in the past and really put in the work," Tomlin said.
Parkrose 59, Lebanon 20
Lebanon 0 7 6 7 - 20
Parkrose 7 15 7 30 – 59
P – Jay Jay Hudson 30 pass from Trey Singleton (Iliya Schichalin kick), 1:59
P – Singleton 15 run (Schichalin kick), 6:36
P - Taydrian Jackson 49 run (Polo Moeaki run), 5:36
L – Cole Weber 6 run (Uriel Rangel kick), 0:15
P – Dale Scott 61 pass from Singleton (Schichalin kick), 9:44
L – Dane Sipos 37 pass from Weber (conversion failed), 6:22
P – Singleton 27 interception return (Scott pass from Singleton), 11:49
P – Mactae Harper 61 run (Lebron Roebeck pass from Singleton), 9:28
L – Keith Brown 14 run (Rangel kick), 8:26
P – Scott 15 pass from Singleton (Schichalin kick), 4:23
P – Izaiah Parks 50 pass from Singleton (Schichalin kick), 0:57
Passing: Lebanon – Weber 5-13-1-69; Parkrose – Singelton 12-16-0-228.
Rushing: Lebanon – Brown 10-123, Weber 9-38, Brock Barrett 9-55, Landon Kisling 3-18, Brayden Burton 2-7; Parkrose – Harper 8-89, Jackson 6-87, Singleton 9-52, Hudson 6-21, Moeaki 6-18.
Receiving: Lebanon – Sipos 1-37, Kyle Haley 1-23, Brayden Currey 1-6, Waylon Wolfe 1-4; Parkrose Scott 7-123, Hudson 2-53, Parks 1-50, Harper 1-3.