The best effort of the season showed the Evergreen Plainsmen are making progress. But 459 yards off offense and four touchdowns wasn’t enough to overcome the play of Eisenhower junior quarterback Kolney Cassel.
Cassel threw for 389 yards and five touchdowns and the Cadets from Yakima improved to 3-1 with the 55-31 win at McKenzie Stadium on Friday.
Eisenhower never trailed, led 20-3 at halftime and kept a safe cushion throughout a high-scoring second half.
For Evergreen, Friday’s highlights included 134 yards and a touchdown on 17 carries from Justin Straup. Senior Artum Conkin, in his first game of the season, made an impact with three catches for 128 yards, including a 72-yard touchdown.
Plainsmen quarterback Anthony Thomas completed 5 of 10 passes for 183 yards.
Evergreen made a terrific goal-line stand midway through the second quarter, stuffing Eisenhower on downs inside the 1-yard line.
A key series came late in the first half when Cassel completed consecutive passes to take the Cadets from a second-and-29 to a touchdown. Taran Hernandez made a leaping catch for a 26-yard gain, then Jones got behind the defense for an easy 40-yard scoring catch.
When Eisenhower marched 51 yards in six plays to open the second half, it appeared the Cadets would run away. But the Plainsmen offense avoided turnovers and started making big plays. It wasn’t enough to earn them their first win, but it was an encouraging performance for a young team.
Cassel threw for 127 yards and two touchdowns in the first quarter, engineering drives of 81 yards and 60 yards to stake the visitors to a quick 12-0 lead.
Next up: Evergreen at Battle Ground
Eisenhower 12 8 21 14—55
Evergreen 0 3 14 14—31
Eis — Denzel Jones 6 pass from Kolney Cassel (run failed)
Eis — Jason Easter 17 pass from Cassel (pass failed)
Eve — Zhividze Timur 32 FG
Eis — Jones 40 pass from Cassel (Andy Soto pass from Cassel)
Eis — Jones 13 pass from Cassel (Sebastian Navarro kick)
Eve — Artum Conkin 72 pass from Thomas (Timur kick)
Eis — Trevon Harris 40 run (Navarro kick)
Eve — Mitchell Hullinger fumble recovery in end zone (Timur kick)
Eis — Harris 4 run (Navarro kick)
Eve — Justin Straup 11 run (Timur kick)
Eis — Harris 16 run (Navarro kick)
Eis — Jones 5 pass from Cassel (Navarro kick)
Eve — Ramone Ortiz 77 run (Timur kick)
Rushing — Eisenhower — Brandon Curtis 9-38, Trevon Harris 11-139. Evergreen — Justin Straup 17-134, Jamaree Jones 7-24, Alex Scribner 4-3, Ramone Ortiz 9-105, Ray Donalde 8-28, Anthony Thomas 5-(minus 18).
Passing — Eisenhower — Kolney Cassel 23-41-0-389. Evergreen — Anthony Thomas 5-10-0-183.
Receiving — Eisenhower — Jones 10-138, Taran Hernandez 2-42, Darius Pati 6-47, Easter 1-17, Curtis 2-22, Harris 2-60. Evergreen — Ramone Ortiz 1-44, Artum Conkin 3-128, Donalde 1-11.