Edmonds-Woodway stuns Lynnwood | Football

Warriors rally from 12-3 halftime deficit
By David Pan | Oct 07, 2016
Photo by: David Pan Edmonds-Woodway’s Jayme Murphy (55) and Abdoulie Jatta wrap up Lynnwood’s Delaun Smiley-Tatum during a Wesco 3A South game Friday night at Edmonds Stadium.

It was gut check time for Edmonds-Woodway.

The Warriors trailed Lynnwood 12-3 at halftime in a Wesco 3A South football clash between two teams who came into the Sept. 30 game tied for first in the league.

Warriors coach John Gradwohl didn’t think his team was playing its best football and he let the players know about it.

“Coach really pretty much gave us an ultimatum – ‘Our season is on the line. Knock off Lynnwood,’” senior running back Henry Tillman said. “We took the challenge on.”

Edmonds-Woodway responded with two touchdowns and a game-winning 30-yard field goal in the second half to defeat the Royals 21-18 Friday night at Edmonds Stadium.

“The first half we didn’t have any intensity,” said senior linebacker Kosta Cooper, who made a key interception in the fourth quarter.

The Warriors regrouped at halftime.

“We came out with some fire,” Cooper said. “We came out with a bunch of intensity and it was a lot of fun in the second half.”

Part of the problem in the first half, Gradwohl said, was that many of the Warriors knew their Lynnwood counterparts well.

“I thought a lot of our guys were caught up in who we were playing and because of that, I didn’t think they played their best football,” he said.

Jackson Karr gave Edmonds-Woodway (3-0 in the league. 3-2 overall) a 3-0 lead on a 35-yard field goal late in the first quarter. The Royals (2-1, 4-1) took a 12-3 lead into halftime on touchdown passes of 14 and 44 yards from quarterback Alton Hammond to wide receivers Andrew Warren and Ryley Johnson. Lynnwood missed both extra point attempts, though.

A 3-yard TD run by Edmonds-Woodway sophomore running back Cappassio Cherry midway through the third quarter cut the deficit to 12-10. Lynnwood responded with a 3-yard touchdown run by Michael Kirkman to extend its lead to 18-10 with about a minute left in the third quarter. A 2-point conversion attempt failed.

The Royals’ drive was aided by 45 yards of penalties by the Warriors.

Edmonds-Woodway tied the score at 18 on a 1-yard TD run by Cherry and a successful 2-point conversion run by Abdoulie Jatta.

An interception by Cooper on Lynnwood’s subsequent offensive drive set up a 30-yard field goal by Karr that gave the Warriors a 21-18 lead with 5:38 left in the contest.

“He always comes up clutch,” Cooper said of Karr. “He always nails those field goals. He’s always practicing every single day, getting his stuff done.”

With about four minutes left in the game, the Warriors stopped the Royals on a fourth down-and-10 on their own 26, taking over the ball at the Lynnwood 34.

Two running plays netted three yards and Edmonds-Woodway was faced with a third-and-7.

Edmonds-Woodway quarterback Kameron Krall then connected with Tillman on a 15-yard pass for a first down and the Warriors ran out the clock to seal the victory.

“We have that play in our playbook for quite a while,” Tillman said. “It wasn’t working. We came back and took a chance. I really give it up to my offensive line and my quarterback making a great throw. It was easy.”

Gradwohl said he was prepared to call another play if the Warriors did not convert on third down.

“I needed a first down,” Gradwohl said. “You get an offense like that, you don’t want to give them the ball back, especially when you’re up a field goal. We already had a fourth play called if that didn’t work. We had another play ready. I was not going to give them the ball back, if I could help it.”

Cherry finished with 131 yards on 29 carries; Krall completed 11 of 23  passes.

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