The Mooks ended their best football season since 1997 in a barn-burner playoff match against The Dalles Riverhawks on a sunny and warm Saturday in The Dalles in front of a huge crowd.
This high-scoring match fueled by a ton of offense on both sides of the ball saw the Cheesemakers coming up short in the 58-51 loss to the Riverhawks in the semifinal matchup in the 4A state playoffs.
The Dalles opened the game with the first score, using just three plays from scrimmage to strike first. Tillamook immediately answered back with a nice drive using eight plays and just four minutes off the clock. The drive ended when Quintin Metcalfe busted through the line on first and goal from the Riverhawk three yardline. The PAT was blocked and the Cheesemakers were down early 7-6.
Another touchdown off a turnover had the Cheesemakers up 13-7 in the first quarter when Messiah Tuiolemotu punched it in on second down and goal from the three yard line.
On The Dalles' next possession they used 13 plays to go 70 yards and took the lead 14-13.
Tillamook took over on their own 43 yard line looking to keep the offensive momentum going, but Werner threw a pic deep in Riverhawk territory with 8:09 left in the half.
The Dalles used 12 plays to go the distance and with 4:30 left in the first half the Dalles let 21-13.
With little time left in the second quarter, Tillamook looked to put one more score on the board before the halftime break. Werner connected with Sam Connelly who stepped out of bounds for the first down.
Werner then connected with Kellen Shelley who busted it up the middle then took it to the sidelines and headed to the house. Shelley was stopped short on the two yard line with a little over two minutes left in the half. The Cheesemakers punched it in from the two and the PAT was good. With 2:17 left in the half the Cheesemakers down 21-20.
Tillamook kicked off and Jackson Pullan the speedy Riverhawk returner went the distance for the quick score. The Riverhawks lead was now 28-20.
Tillamook took the kick to midfield. On the third play from scrimmage Werner hooked up with Zeke Coon from the 33-yard line for the Cheesemaker score. The PAT was good and the Cheesemakers were only down one again, 28-27.
The Dalles got the ball back with 1:43 left in the half and up by one. On their second run attempt the Riverhawks fumbled and the Mooks piled on the ball for the recovery. Werner took the keeper on the option for a pick up of two yards.
After offsetting infractions, Werner hooked up with Coon again and the speedy wide receiver took it down to the five yard line and Tillamook took timeout with just a tick on the clock. Tillamook came in for the field goal and the kick was good. Tillamook took a 30-28 lead into the locker room.
Tillamook received the kick in the second half but after the third play from scrimmage, Coon dropped the ball on the 26 yard line and the Riverhawks took over possession.
The Dalles used a 10-play drive and a two point conversion to take the lead again 36-30.
Tillamook got the ball back with the Riverhawk kickoff, but a bad snap from the shotgun formation for the second Mook turnover of the quarter and the Riverhawks were starting to pull away from the Cheesemakers. But the Mook defense were not going to let that happen. The Riverhawks used just six plays on the drive then a hard hit from a Tillamook defender and the Dalles fumble the ball. The Cheesemakers took over on their own 13-yard line stopping the Dalles offense.
Tillamook used seven plays and took the ball 86 yards for another score, Werner ran it in from the two-yard line. The PAT was good and Tillamook took the lead again 37-36.
With the third quarter winding down, Tillamook kicked off to the Riverhawks. Tillamook led after three quarters 37-36 in this offensively lopsided matchup.
The Riverhawks were moving the ball early in the fourth quarter. They score on a short run and with the PAT good take the lead again 44-37.
The Dalles kicked off. Tillamook took over on the 30 yard line. Werner connected again to Shelley who took it close to midfield. Next play Werner found some running room, good enough for a first down. Three plays later Werner kept the ball again and busts through from the 34-yard line to the end zone. With the PAT good, the Mooks tied it up at 44-44.
The Cheesemakers kicked off to The Dalles. The Riverhawks kept the offense going and used seven plays to take it the distance. The Dalles took the lead again 51-44.
A Cheesemaker fumble, their third in the second half gave the ball back to the Riverhawks. The Dalles used just five plays from scrimmage to score again and the Cheesemakers saw themselves down 58-44 with 3:31 left in the game.
Tillamook went four and out on their next possession and The Dalles take over up two scores 3:22 left to play in the final quarter.
The Dalles moved the ball and ate up most of the three minutes remaining in the game. Tillamook stopped them on third and 13 with a big hit by Perry Reeder. The Dalles went for it on fourth down but an incomplete pass gave the ball back to Tillamook.
Werner completed a pass to Shelley who took it out of bounds to stop the clock with 48 ticks left.
The Cheesemakers were not giving up one bit. Werner connected again to Shelley for a first and 10 with 26 seconds left in the game and the ball on the 18 yard line. Werner’s next pass to Shelley was incomplete but pass interference was called on the Riverhaws. It was first and goal from the five yard line for the Cheesemakers. Werner ran the ball in from the five yard line with just 5 seconds left on the clock. The PAT was good and Tillamook was only down by one score. 58-51 and two ticks on the clock. The game ended with Tillamook down 58-51.
• Tillamook 527 yards of offense,
• Chad Werner 300 yards passing 154 yards on the ground
• Zeke Coon 4 catches for 66 yards
• Kellen Shelley 134 yards of offense
• Kaleb Boomer 1 catch for 12 yards
472 yards of offense
295 rushing yards
177 passing yards 1/33