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Union rolls to win over Heritage

Titans tune up for Papermakers with 42-14 victory

By , Columbian Assistant Sports Editor
Published: October 10, 2014, 5:00pm

The Union Titans came into Friday night’s game against Heritage with one goal.

It is the same goal the Titans will have over the next six days, with No. 2 Camas looming on the schedule.

Get better, from top to bottom.

The Titans showed off some of their depth on Friday in rolling to a 42-14 win over the Timberwolves at McKenzie Stadium.

“Tonight, we kind of took a step back and focused on the simple things,” quarterback Nolan Henry said. “We got some of the younger guys in to make sure we’re deep at all positions.”

That was clearly part of Union coach Gary McGarvie’s plan.

On the Titans’ third possession, with Union leading 7-0 in the first quarter, McGarvie put in many of his second teamers. Sophomore running back Abe Smith ran three times for 35 yards and sophomore Tommy Strassenberg capped the six-play, 49-yard drive with a 16-yard touchdown run to give Union a 14-0 lead.

The Union starters returned to the field the next possession with the Titans taking a 21-0 lead at the end of the first quarter on Henry’s 24-yard scoring run.

Union stayed with the plan to let the reserves play every third possession. When Henry returned to the field, he led a late flurry of Titan points, scoring on a 12-yard touchdown run that gave Union a 28-0 lead with 2:27 left in the half.

After Heritage scored quickly to cut the margin to 28-7, Henry led Union on an eight-play, 58-yard drive that was capped with Caleb Browning’s second touchdown run, an 11-yard score that made it Union 35-7 with 27 seconds left in the half.

On Heritage’s next offensive play, Browning intercepted a pass and returned it 50 yards for a score and a 42-7 halftime lead.

Browning said the Titans’ approach with their reserve players is nothing new.

“That’s what we’ve been doing ever since team camp is getting all of our deep guys reps,” he said. “That way we can be deep because … I have a cramping problem. So it’s nice to have people who know no matter who is in, they’re going to get the job done. Good teams need that.”

Neither the starters nor the reserves on offense saw the field much in the third quarter when a muffed punt and a fumble allowed Heritage to possess the ball for all but 53 seconds of the third period.

But the Titans’ ground attack sealed the win in the fourth quarter.

Browning finished with 141 yards rushing, while Smith added 108 yards on 12 carries. Jarod Luedecker provided a late spark for Heritage by returning an interception 102 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.

“We played pretty sloppy actually,” Browning said. “We’ll take the win, but we got a week to get better for the game that everyone’s been talking about.”

Oh yes, that game — the showdown with the Papermakers.

“Right now we’re just looking within ourselves,” Henry said. “We have to stop shooting ourselves in the foot with penalties and what not. We’ve got to keep working on our own craft to make sure we can beat anyone in the state. Next week isn’t about Camas. It’s about us.”

UNION 42, HERITAGE 14

Union 21 21 0 0–42

Her. 0 7 0 7–14

First quarter

U — Caleb Browning 2 run (Jonathan Granados kick)

U — Tommy Strassenberg 16 run (Granados kick)

U — Nolan Henry 24 run (Granados kick)

Second quarter

U — Henry 12 run (Granados kick)

H — Payton Monda 3 run (Bailey Thomason kick)

U — Browning 11 run (Granados kick)

U — Browning 50 interception return (Granados kick)

Fourth quarter

H — Jarod Luedecker 102 interception return (Thomason kick)

Individual statistics

RUSHING — Union: Browning 16-141, Abe Smith 12-108, R.J. Quirante 3-45, Henry 4-30, Strassenberg 1-16, Keithen Shepard 2-11, Jordan Lawson 3-5, Zach Sievers 1-0. Heritage: Kalani Umiamaka 16-90, Tyler VanBuskirk 2-(-18), Monda 8-(-26).

PASSING — Union: Henry 9-17-0-76, Lawson 3-8-1-42. Heritage: VanBuskirk 5-8-0-38, Monda 9-17-1-106.

RECEIVING — Union: Tyler Dionne 5-43, Gabe Mullen 3-22, Zach Caston 1-11, Shepard 1-21, Adrian Andrade 1-15, Smith 1-6. Heritage: Luedecker 5-64, Nick Somboun 5-35, Thomason 1-10, Jeremiah Kelly 1-18, Umiamaka 2-17.

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