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Battle Ground scores knockout over Thunder (video)

Tigers top Mountain View 48-26

By Paul Valencia, Columbian High School Sports Reporter
Published: September 16, 2016, 9:05pm
5 Photos
Mountain View defensive back Darien Chase loses his helmet while taking down Battle Ground running back Curtis Stradley at McKenzie Stadium in Vancouver on Friday, September 16, 2016. Battle Ground routed Mountain View 48-26.
Mountain View defensive back Darien Chase loses his helmet while taking down Battle Ground running back Curtis Stradley at McKenzie Stadium in Vancouver on Friday, September 16, 2016. Battle Ground routed Mountain View 48-26. (Samuel Wilson for the Columbian) Photo Gallery

A lot of points again.
Only, this matchup was so much different than the previous two meetings.
This one was all Battle Ground when it mattered.
Gunner Talkington threw for 359 yards and five touchdowns Friday, leading the Tigers to a 48-26 victory over Mountain View at McKenzie Stadium.
The two teams split meetings in 2014 and 2015 when they combined for 98 points in the first game and 112 last season.
Battle Ground was doing most of the scoring early in this one, with the Tigers jumping out to a 41-6 lead at the half.
“We talked about it all week,” Battle Ground’s Max Randle said. “Our defense had to stop them. Our defense had to step up and shut them down.”
Again, for a half — the half that determined this non-league game — that’s pretty much what happened.
Battle Ground had 358 yards at the half. Mountain View had 119.
“This is my first year of varsity,” said linebacker Spencer Matz, who had a first-half sack and was in the Mountain View backfield often. “It felt so great to contribute to the team and not watch from the sideline.”
He also is an offensive lineman who helped the Tigers do whatever they wanted in that first half.
“My line gave me a bunch of time, and our backs picked up the blitzes very well, and our receivers are getting open and making plays,” Talkington said. “Receivers are making people miss and getting more yards.”
Plus, those receivers have a quarterback who almost always seems to be on target. Talkington completed 21 of his 27 passes.
Still, there was no need for 50 or 60 points this year.
“Our defense played their hearts out,” said Randle, last season’s 4A Greater St. Helens League’s co-defensive player of the year.
Randle and Brock Robinson each had interceptions. Linebacker Curtis Stradley forced two Mountain View fumbles.
“I don’t know how to explain it,” Stradley said. “It feels like we’re working better together as a defense.”
“Our coaches game-planned the … out of them,” Randle said.
Battle Ground coach Larry Peck acknowledged he watched even more video than he usually does, preparing for this one.
“I was really proud of them. They studied hard,” Peck said. “I felt good about our whole effort as a group.”
Mountain View did get three second-half touchdowns. As a coach, Peck said he is not satisfied with that. But, he added, he doesn’t want to be greedy. His Tigers are 3-0.
Still, none of the Tigers think it is that special. They expected this.
“We’re not done yet,” Randle said. “We still have a lot to prove to the other teams in our league.”
“We’re not happy until we’re 14-0,” Matz said.
That raised some eyebrows. But the Tigers  liked that answer.
“I don’t know what to say after that,” Talkington said.
The Tigers did most of their talking on the field, anyway.
Talkington went 5 for 5 for 75 yards on the first drive of the game with 12-yard TD pass to Randle for a quick lead. Randle would finish with eight catches for 122 yards and three scores.
Talkington needed two plays — quarterback keepers — to find the end zone on the next drive. He scored on a 30-yard run.
The Thunder responded with a six-play, 63-yard scoring drive. Andre Scheer found Darien Chase for a 13-yard touchdown pass. Just six minutes into the game, it was 14-6.
Could it be happening again?
Not so much.
Battle Ground would score touchdowns on four of its next five possessions.
Talkington to Randle two more times. After a Mountain View fumble, Talkington found Austin Adams for a 29-yard TD, with Adams making a sensational grab while getting a foot down in bound, right at the pylon, for a 35-6 lead.
Stradley made it 41-6 with a 5-yard touchdown run with 4;20 to play in the first half.
Talkington had 251 of his yards in that half.
The Thunder got a 59-yard touchdown run from Scheer in the third quarter, then a short TD run from Michael Urruchua early in the fourth.
Talkinton notched his fifth TD pass of the night, finding a wide open Adams in the end zone to make it 48-19. Adams had six catches for 112 yards.
Mountain View’s Cameron Henderson capped the scoring with a leaping TD pass from Scheer with four minutes to play.
It made for a lot of scoring — again — but by then the Tigers knew they had got the best of this trilogy.

B. Ground    21    20    0    7—48
Mtn. View    6    0    6    14—26
First quarter
BG — Max Randle 12 pass from Gunner Talkington (Riley Phillips kick)
BG — Talkington 30 run (Phillips kick)
MV — Darien Chase 13 pass from Andre Scheer (kick blocked)
BG — Randle 21 pass from Talkington (Phillips kick)
Second quarter
BG — Randle 6 pass from Talkington (Phillips kick)
BG — Austin Adams 29 pass from Talkington (Phillips kick)
BG — Curtis Stradley 5 run (kick failed)
Third quarter
MV — Scheer 59 run (pass failed)
Fourth quarter
MV — Michael Urruchua 2 run (Bryan Valdez kick)
BG — Adams 7 pass from Talkington (Phillips kick)
MV — Cameron Henderson 40 pass from Scheer (Valdez kick)

Individuals statistics
RUSHING — Battle Ground: Talkington 11-31, Stradley 6-36, Bailey Buckner 2-6, Phillips 1-12, Brock Robinson 1-1, Kalau Higgins 1-0, Prince Grotte 11-38, Adams 1-22, Team 2- (-9). Mountain View: Scheer 19-101, Glen Perry 3-8, Nile Jones 3-3, Jack Mertens 6-55, Tyrell Hall 3-0, Urruchua 3-8.
PASSING — Battle Ground: Talkington 21-27-0-359, Adams 1-1-0-(-1) Mountain View: Scheer 7-21-2-157
RECEIVING — Battle Ground: Buckner 2-23, Adams 6-112, Randle 8-122, Phillips 2-38, Higgins 2-56, Stradley 1-8, Robinson 1-(-1). Mountain View: Chase 5-118, Michael Bolds 1-(-1), Henderson 1-40.

Columbian High School Sports Reporter