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Mountain View clears first hurdle, Squalicum, 42-0 to advance to 3A state quarterfinals

For the Thunder, Saturday's near-flawless performance started at lunch

By Andy Buhler, Columbian Staff Writer
Published: November 10, 2018, 9:34pm
6 Photos
Mountain View running back Jack Mertens breaks tackles to stay in bounds against Squalicum at McKenzie Stadium on Saturday night, November 11, 2018. Mountain View crushed Squalicum 42-0 in the first round of the 3A state football playoffs.
Mountain View running back Jack Mertens breaks tackles to stay in bounds against Squalicum at McKenzie Stadium on Saturday night, November 11, 2018. Mountain View crushed Squalicum 42-0 in the first round of the 3A state football playoffs. (Samuel Wilson for the Columbian) Photo Gallery

Each school day at Mountain View High School, the team captains lead the team in players-only film review sessions, where they comb through the opposition’s — and their own — film in an effort to best prepare for the  next game.

Some years, coach Adam Mathieson has needed to urge players to do it.

Not this year.

“That’s the kind of group they are,” Mathieson said. “They just do it. It’s a group that I trust explicitly from that standpoint.”

The 3-seeded Thunder made few mistakes in its 42-0 thrashing of No. 14 Squalicum in the first round of the 3A state playoffs on Saturday night at McKenzie Stadium.

Players say that’s because they treated opposing team as if they were studying for a weekly exam — one they take as a group, in which everyone is held accountable.

20 Photos
Mountain View running back Jack Mertens breaks tackles to stay in bounds against Squalicum at McKenzie Stadium on Saturday night, November 11, 2018. Mountain View crushed Squalicum 42-0 in the first round of the 3A state football playoffs.
Mountain View Squalicum football Photo Gallery

Consider week 11 an A-plus.

And for captain Andrew Gulliford, who leads the defense’s lunchtime film sessions, week 10’s lesson plan worked.

“Everything they lined up for we basically called in the game,” defensive back/receiver Makai Anderson said. “Whether they’re running a power, or a train, we basically knew what they were doing and we were pretty comfortable.”

The Thunder forced five turnovers total. The first four drives ended in a turnover — the first two fumbles, the next two interceptions.

And they held a team that went for 572 yards rushing the week prior to 85 on Saturday night.

The Thunder nursed a four-touchdown lead in the second quarter. After Earnhardt picked off Squalicum quarterback Spencer Lloyd at MV’s four yard line, the Thunder marched 96 yards in seven plays before scoring on a 15-yard yard pass from Moen to Earnhardt.

The drive featured a 26-yard pass to Michael Bolds (who in the second quarter tied the Mountain View single season interception record with seven), and a 29-yard pass to Rodolfo Montiel.

Mountain View led 35-0 at halftime. Its final touchdown, a 63-yarder from Moen to Anderson, came in the fourth quarter. On the previous drive,  Anderson had fumbled after a 13-yard catch on 4th and 4, and was determined to make up for it. When he lined up for the play, he saw Moen throw a dart over the middle to Earnhardt, went through the receivers hands.

Luckily, Anderson was downfield in line with the throw. And there was plenty enough mustard to get it there.

“He missiled that ball,” Anderson said. “(Earnhardt) came off the field and said, ‘damn, that ball was coming quick.’ ”

Jack Mertens finished with 118 yards rushing — all in the first half. Moen posted a steady performance, completing 11 of 13 passes for 209 yards, no turnovers, two passing touchdowns and two on the ground (both from a yard out).

If the seeding committee’s selection was any indication, there was no tripping up Mountain View (10-1) in the first round.

With the win, the Thunder will host Rainier Beach in the quarterfinals at McKenzie Stadium on either Friday or Saturday.

And this week, they’ll presumably be spending each lunch hour pouring over their next exam — err, opponent.

Mathieson can pinpoint between 15 and 18 players who have the chops to go into coaching one day. With this group, that gives him all the more confidence.

“Coaches can help a team be good, but great teams are run by players. Period,” Mathieson said.

MOUNTAIN VIEW 42, SQUALICUM 0
Squalicum 0 0 0 0 — 0
Mtn. View 14 21 7 — 42

SCORING SUMMARY
First quarter
MV — Garrett Moen 1 run (Aiden Hargrove kick)
MV — Makai Anderson 9 pass from Moen (Hargrove kick)
Second quarter
MV — Moen 1 run (Hargrove kick)
MV — Jack Mertens 2 run (Hargrove kick)
MV — Philiip Earnhardt 15 pass from Moen (Hargrove kick)
Fourth quarter
MV — Anderson 63 pass from Moen (Hargrove kick)

INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
RUSHING — Squalicum: Devante Powell 5-17, Spencer Lloyd 15-68, Collin McEachran 2-15, Ben Schlenbaker 7-11, Dedrick Mitchell 4-(-2), Mason Lloyd 1-(-4). Mountain View: Garrett Moen 11-41, Jack Mertens 13-118, Philip Earnhardt 5-30, Tresean Foreman 3-7, Xavier Mayo 1-(-2).

PASSING — Squalicum: Spencer Lloyd 12-24-2-151, Dedrick Mitchell 0-1-1-0. Mountain View: Garrett Moen 11-13-0-209.

RECEIVING — Squalicum: Zach Tucker 2-30, Dedrick Mitchell 6-83, Ben Schlenbaker 1-12, Collin McEachran 3-15, Bryce Pennock 2-19, Mason Lloyd 1-2. Mountain View: Michael Bolds 3-33, Makai Anderson 5-111, Jack Mertens 2-34, Rodolfo Montiel 1-29, Philip Earnhardt 1-15.

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Columbian Staff Writer