Posts Tagged ‘Chimacum’

   Wolf senior Cameron Toomey-Stout hugs lil’ sis Maya after playing his final game on the CHS gridiron. (Photo courtesy Beth Stout)

   Hunter Downes (left) and Jake Hoagland, friends since kindergarten, connected on a record-breaking TD pass. (Photo courtesy Lisa Jenne)

You don’t always get the storybook ending.

That point has been driven home repeatedly for the injury-decimated Coupeville High School football team this fall, and Friday night provided another tear-stained chapter.

On the one hand, Wolf QB Hunter Downes threw for three touchdowns on his Senior Night, with the final one breaking a school career record held since 2003 by current CHS Offensive Coordinator Brad Sherman.

That the record ball, the 34th TD toss flung by Downes, flew exactly 34 yards, then softly dropped into the waiting hands of his friend since kindergarten, Jake Hoagland, can give you goosebumps.

But, this isn’t Hollywood, and even that bit of magic wasn’t quite enough, as the Wolves fell 33-27 to visiting Chimacum.

The loss sends Coupeville, which had almost as many players in street clothes as in uniform, to 1-5 in Olympic/Nisqually League play, 3-6 overall.

With a visit Nov. 4 to state-ranked Cascade Christian (6-0, 8-1) the only game left on the schedule, the Wolves desperately wanted to send their eight seniors out on a high note Friday.

And, despite playing without key two-way starters Hunter Smith, Sean Toomey-Stout, Matt Hilborn and Chris Battaglia, Coupeville almost did just that, rallying from an 18-point deficit to have a shot at the end.

Which was kind of surprising, since things did not start out all that well, frankly.

The Wolves couldn’t stop Chimacum’s run game, and couldn’t get their own offense to fire on all cylinders.

Coupeville finished the first quarter with zero yards to its credit, with losses on four plays counteracting what small gains it could muster, and trailed 12-0 at the first break.

That stretched out to 18-0 on the second play of the second quarter, when Cowboy QB Peyton Hundley hit Isaac Purser on a 23-yard scoring strike.

Coming on the heels of a three-yard TD run from Mathew Bainbridge and another Hundley-to-Purser scoring pass, this one a wobbly 33-yarder which barely made it there, Chimacum was clicking, and Coupeville was flailing.

Other than a failure to convert a PAT and two conversion attempts, the Cowboys were golden, it seemed.

Enter Camtastic, who flipped the script in a few huge strides.

Snaring a kickoff on the run, Wolf senior Cameron Toomey-Stout shot forward, cut to his left, shredded the ankles of at least two Chimacum tacklers, then found a new gear and tore down the left sideline.

By the time he slowed down, 85 yards later, Coupeville was finally on the board, and, after Downes drilled the PAT, the momentum of the game began to take a huge turn.

Toomey-Stout broke up a third-down pass on Chimacum’s next possession, accelerating and going airborne to tip the ball free at the last second, forcing the Cowboys to punt.

Picking up positive offensive yardage for the first time all night, the Wolves packaged together a smash-mouth run from Andrew Martin, a 22-yard reverse from Camtastic and a pair of 15-yard penalties by the Cowboy defense to march down the field.

Chimacum was fond of collecting roughing the passer and unnecessary roughness penalties on this night. While that helped Coupeville pick up first downs, the abuse did take a noticeable toll on Downes.

He spent a good deal of the game limping, and had to be removed for several plays after one rough hit left him prone on the turf.

On this drive, though, Downes stayed upright, pegging an 18-yard bomb to Toomey-Stout in the left corner of the end zone for the first of his three TD passes.

Back within 18-14, the Wolves had made a fight of things, and the two teams spent the remainder of the first half counter-punching.

Chimacum dropped a hay-maker on a 60-yard TD run from Bainbridge, before Coupeville responded with a one-two counter.

First Downes popped a short scoring strike over the middle to Teo Keilwitz after a long drive.

While chewing up 70 yards, CHS used two quarterbacks, as Shane Losey slid over to replace Downes after he got knocked out of the game for two plays.

One of those plays was a short bull run by Martin, the other a quick 16-yard pass, with Losey threading the ball between defenders to Hoagland.

Back within four again, the Wolves got a huge emotional burst when a hyped-up Julian Welling tore through the Chimacum line and batted away a Cowboy field goal attempt to end the first half.

But, if the first half was about offense, with Chimacum clinging to a 25-21 lead, the second half turned the spotlight squarely on the defense.

And it was the Cowboy backfield which rose to the occasion, snuffing out three straight Wolf drives, one on a pick in the deepest, darkest corner of the end zone.

Hundley stung his rival at QB on that one, popping the ball into the air, snagging it and holding on to it against all odds as he landed on his back.

The other big stop came on a fourth-and-37 midway through the fourth quarter, after two penalties and two sacks drove Coupeville steadily backwards.

Downes, pulling off a fake punt that every Wolf fan saw coming, pulled the ball up and hit Toomey-Stout in stride, but a Cowboy pulled Camtastic down a mere four yards short of the first down.

With Chimacum having tacked on a short scoring run from Hundley in between those stops, the Cowboys had the ball and a 33-21 lead with less than three minutes to play.

The game was over, and then, it wasn’t, as the fairy tale ending started to script itself again.

Senior lineman Kyle Rockwell is a big, bad man, but one relatively new to the football field.

As he said in his Senior Night farewell, “I would like to thank my friends for continually bugging me and reminding me to talk to my parents about letting me play football, even if it meant for one year.

“Without them bugging me, I would’ve probably never played because I would have stopped asking the first time my dad said no.”

Rockwell is blind in one eye, but after convincing parents Sheldon and Tina to let him take the field, he has delivered.

He blocked a kick against Vashon and then, late, late on Senior Night, knocked the ball free on a running play and landed on it for a ginormous fumble recovery.

With the ball back in his hands and 2:43 left on the clock, Downes limped behind center, and, on his third try, hit pay-dirt, lofting the ball down the left sideline.

Hoagland beat his man by a step, reached to the heavens, and pulled in the record-breaker, two lifelong friends forging one of the great moments in CHS football history.

But, as the fog curled around the edges of the field, and the new, almost-built grandstand — which will debut after these seniors depart — glistened in the moonlight, the last bits of magic dust flickered away across the prairie.

Instead, it was Hundley, dodging the Wolf pass rush on third-and-12 with a minute to play, hitting Bainbridge in stride for a win-clinching 28-yard pickup, who got to celebrate.

He’s a senior, too, and, like his battered Coupeville counterparts, has endured a rough season. Chimacum came in bearing a six-game losing streak, not having won since it beat South Whidbey in week #2.

Sometimes, the “bad guys” get the storybook ending, and, sometimes, they probably deserve it.

For Coupeville’s gridiron Class of 2018 — Welling, Downes, Hoagland, Toomey-Stout, Rockwell, James Vidoni, Tyler McCalmont and the injured Smith — Senior Night didn’t end quite like they wanted.

Doesn’t mean they haven’t had a good run.

They’ve set game, season and career records during their time repping CHS — Smith owns seven of them by himself — and they walked off their home field Friday connected by the game they play and by friendship.

Somewhere, down the road, whether it’s six months or at their 10-year reunion, they will look back and they will remember the good times — the big plays, the wins, the inside jokes — more than the injuries and losses.

They were Wolves, every step of the way, and they did their families, their school, and themselves, proud.

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   Coupeville’s small, but scrappy, middle school football team showed great growth this season. (Bob Martin photo)

“They done good.”

While the Coupeville Middle School football team couldn’t nab a win in its final game of the season Wednesday, the Wolves earned the approval of coach Bob Martin.

Chimacum used a punishing running game to pull away for a 33-16 win on its home turf, leaving Coupeville with a final record of 1-4.

Playing mostly against teams with much-larger rosters, the Wolves held their own this season. Even when they lost, there weren’t any blowouts.

In its finale, CMS got a couple of big offensive plays from Caleb Meyer, Xavier Murdy and Cody Roberts, and strong defensive play from Nezi Keiper and Scott Hilborn.

As they hang up their uniforms, a look back at those who made up the roster:

Mathias Anderson
Lucious Binnings
Isaiah Bittner
Brayden Coatney
Brawn Gadberry
Jesus Garcia-Partida
Ty Hamilton
Scott Hilborn
Nezi Keiper
Logan Martin
Caleb Meyer
Xavier Murdy
Kevin Partida
Michael Peterson
Cody Roberts
Gabe Shaw
Damon Stadler
Josh Upchurch
Logan Wertz
Hawthorne Wolfe
Kiara Contreras
(Team Manager)
Lucas Salazar (Team Manager)

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   Gwen Gustafson and her Coupeville Middle School volleyball teammates close their season at home Thursday. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

They’re peaking at the right time.

Finishing the regular season with three home matches in one week, the last one which will go down Thursday, the Coupeville Middle School volleyball squads are going out in style.

Wednesday, both the 7th and 8th grade Wolves romped to wins against Blue Heron, each taking two of three sets from the visitors.

Coupeville will try to keep that momentum going when it hosts Sequim in its finale Thursday. First tip is 3:15 PM.

Facing off with Blue Heron, which hails from Port Townsend, the Wolf 7th graders cruised to the win thanks to strong serving.

They hit on 35 of 44 serves across the first two sets.

Brynn Schmidt kick-started things, nailing 10 serves in a row to start the first set, before Kaielle Bepler (seven serves) and Alita Blouin (6) carried the burden in the next set.

Since Blue Heron fields only one team for each grade, Coupeville mashed together its varsity and JV teams on the afternoon.

“Everyone played, so it was great to get the whole team on the court, even though it was only three games,” said CMS 7th grade co-coach Kimberly Bepler.

“We’ll be glad to play the full three games for JV and the full three games for varsity tomorrow (Thursday),” she added. “The girls are looking forward to playing our last match after a really fun season of learning and acquiring new skills.”

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   Wolf sharpshooter Lindsey Roberts returned Wednesday after missing a chunk of the season, scoring in a 2-1 overtime win. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

You can’t keep a superstar down.

Chimacum found that out, twice, Wednesday night, as its best-laid plans for a soccer upset were denied in the final moments by two of Coupeville’s best.

Backs pushed to the wall, the Wolf booters rallied for a 2-1 road win in overtime on goals from Lindsey Roberts and Kalia Littlejohn.

The stunning turn of events lifts CHS to 6-3 in Olympic League play, 8-8 overall.

As the Wolves bid farewell to the regular season and turn their attention to the playoffs — they host Vashon Island 1 PM Saturday at Oak Harbor Stadium — they have tied last year’s team for the most wins in a season by a CHS girls soccer squad.

To get there, though, Coupeville had to battle.

Despite a hail of shots which just missed finding the back of the net, the Wolves found themselves in a scoreless tie late in regulation.

Then, to the horror of everyone associated with the road team, the Cowboys slipped in a goal with 10 minutes and counting.

That was the turning point, however, “sparking us into a higher gear” in the words of Coupeville coach Kyle Nelson.

Enter the first superstar, as Roberts, reborn and returned to the pitch after missing a chunk of the season while battling a leg injury, cranked home the tying goal with five minutes to play.

After being relegated to taping games and being a cheerleader for several games, the Wolf junior seized her opportunity, collecting her fifth goal of the year.

Not to be outdone, Littlejohn, Coupeville’s leading scorer, broke a recent dry spell, ramming home the game winner on a “golden goal” in sudden death overtime.

It was Kalia’s 16th score of the season and the 34th of her stellar career, pulling her within one of big sis Mia Littlejohn’s CHS girls soccer career record of 35, tallied from 2014-2016.

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   After winning at Chimacum, Kyla Briscoe and the high-flying CHS spikers haven’t dropped a set in seven league matches. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

   Payton Aparicio (right), here spending quality time with Kayla Rose (left) and Emma Smith, had a school single-game record 18 service aces Tuesday.

By the time the Wolves were done chomping, not a Cowboy was left standing.

Flexing their collective spike-launching muscles, all three Coupeville High School volleyball squads cruised to straight-sets wins Tuesday at Chimacum, keeping their records spotless in conference action.

Take the Wolf varsity, JV and C-Team this season, add them together and they’re a combined 24-3 overall, 17-0 in Olympic League play.

Varsity cruises:

Having clinched a second-straight league title a night earlier, when Klahowya was upset by Port Townsend, Coupeville is playing for perfection.

The Wolves now sit at 7-0 in league play, 10-2 overall after drilling Chimacum (1-6, 1-9) to the tune of 25-13, 25-12, 25-18.

That keeps another streak alive, as well, as CHS has won all 21 sets it has played against league foes this season.

Coupeville returns home Wednesday to face Klahowya (4-3, 6-7) on Senior Night (4:00 varsity/5:15 JV), then wraps the regular season Saturday at Port Townsend (2-5, 4-10).

After that, it’s off to districts in Tacoma Nov. 4.

As the #1 seed from the Olympic League, the Wolves automatically advance to the double elimination portion of the tourney.

Win at least one of two matches and CHS volleyball is state bound for the first time since 2004.

Tuesday night was about getting in the gym, putting a quick and efficient beat-down on the Cowboys and ankling for the last ferry out of town.

But Chimacum, pulling a page out of North Mason’s “stall, stall and stall some more” playbook, stretched things way out, opting to play varsity last even though Coupeville had a set time to leave.

Then, the Cowboys opted to play meaningless third sets in both of the night’s first two matches, hold Senior Night festivities and still take every single minute allotted for the varsity teams to warm up.

Which meant the Wolves were literally racing the clock in the third set, trying to get that 75th and final point on the board before 7:30 PM clicked into view and the CHS bus started spinning its wheels in the parking lot.

They made it, but just barely, with numerous players chipping in to fill up the stat sheet.

“I thought we took care of business well, getting everyone involved in the process and working together,” Coupeville coach Cory Whitmore said. “Our serve was strong, serving to spots and moving the ball around.

“We have to hit with more efficiency come district time, but I thought we came at them from all angles when given the chance.”

Katrina McGranahan led the hit parade, pounding down seven kills, while Payton Aparicio was all over the floor, picking up four kills, six digs and a school single-game record 18 aces on her serve.

Payton was on fire tonight! Very proud of how hard she has worked on her serve and it has definitely paid off in results,” Whitmore said.

The previous ace record was 13, set in 2010 by Jessica Riddle.

Kyla Briscoe and Mikayla Elfrank added three kills apiece, Hope Lodell went low for eight digs and McGranahan connected on five aces to round out the stat sheet.

JV romps:

The best record for any Coupeville fall sports team belongs to the JV spikers, who raised their record to a sterling 10-1 overall, 7-0 in league play.

Chris Smith’s squad was led by freshman Chelsea Prescott, who scorched the Cowboys with 10 aces during a 25-11, 25-8, 15-12 win.

C-Team rolls:

Coupeville’s third unit capped a 4-0 season with a 25-9, 25-12, 15-13 victory.

The Wolves were powered by the wham-bam serving duo of Heidi Clinkscales, who ripped off 12 aces at the service stripe, and Willow Vick, who pounded away for nine of her own.

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