WALLA WALLA - The final four minutes and change of the first half of Friday night's Big Nine Conference 4A football game between Wa-Hi and Davis at Borleske Stadium illustrated why the Blue Devils have yet to win a game this season and the Pirates are undefeated.
Quarterback Deion Wright threw three touchdown passes in the final 4:16 of the second quarter as Davis wiped out a 7-0 Wa-Hi advantage and went on to post a 41-16 triumph.
The Blue Devils came up short despite 274 yards rushing from junior running back Jonah Hoe.
Davis is now 3-0 in league and 5-0 overall, and dropped Wa-Hi to 0-3 and 0-5.
For the first 19-plus minutes of half one, the Blue Devils looked like the team that entered the contest with an unblemished mark and the league's top defense.
Darnell Handcox ended the Pirates' opening possession with an interception at the Wa-Hi 13-yard line.
The Blue Devils marched to the Davis 1 following the pick, only to have their series end when Hoe was tackled for a 2-yard loss on fourth down and goal to go.
"We wanted to score a touchdown, so we decided to take a shot" Wa-Hi coach Eric Hisaw said. "We were not going to coach not to lose."
Jake Grandstaff brought Davis' second drive to a halt when he batted down a Wright pass on a fourth-and-3 play from the Wa-Hi 42.
The Blue Devils broke a scoreless stalemate early in the second quarter. Quarterback Dakota Turner hit wide receiver Moe Handcox with a touchdown pass of 29 yards at the 7:24 mark that closed a 63-yard, six-play foray.
"We showed what we could do," Hisaw said. "We played so dang well, extremely well. We really did."
"I was afraid something like this might happen," said Davis coach Rick Clark, whose team was coming off an overtime victory over Richland a week earlier in Yakima. "We came out flat. A lot of our kids have not been in this situation at the high school level.
"We knew (Hoe) was a real good player. (Handcox) is a real good player," Clark said. "Eric does a good job here."
Davis equalized when Wright hit tight end Austin Lynn from 17 yards away on the ninth snap of a 65-yard drive.
The Pirates took the lead for good on their next possession on a Wright-to-Chris Chapman pass of 54 yards with 30.8 seconds on the clock.
Chapman intercepted a Turner pass at the Blue Devil 47 on Wa-Hi's next series.
Davis converted the turnover with just 3.6 seconds left on a 47-yard Wright aerial over the middle to a streaking Cooper Kupp, who took the throw in first-down territory and outran Wa-Hi defenders while angling toward the right sideline.
"It was a nightmare," Hisaw said of the closing stages of the half. "We seem to be a step short at (the) critical moment. We're not doing a good enough job of making our own breaks."
Wa-Hi's Dean Atkinson kicked a 31-yard field goal with 3:08 gone in the third quarter, but Wright threw a 4-yard touchdown pass to David Trimble at the 6:07 mark to make it 28-10.
Daniel Guzman booted a 33-yard field goal with 10:37 to go in the final period and Kupp returned a Turner interception 25 yards for a score less than a minute later to build the Davis lead to 28, 38-10.
Wa-Hi's Blake Rowley caught a 6-yard touchdown pass from Turner with 8:01 remaining.
Guzman ended the game's scoring on a 20-yard field goal with 6:02 left.
"We have great skilled athletes," Clark said. "I'd put our top five receivers, our running back, and our quarterback against anybody in the state."
Wright completed 19-of-28 passes for 376 yards. Trimble caught five passes while Chapman and Kupp hauled in four apiece for Davis.
Handcox led Wa-Hi receivers with six catches for 59 yards.
Hisaw praised the offensive line - center Jeremy Larson, guards Joel McClure and Simon Quackenbush, tackles Logan Reardon and Quinn Piver, and tight end Rob Ferenz - for what he described as his team's "best offensive output of the season."
Wa-Hi gained 392 yards on the night.
The Blue Devils have a bye this week before hosting Richland Oct. 14.
Davis 41, Wa-Hi 16
Davis 0 21 7 13 - 41
Wa-Hi 0 7 3 6 - 16
Wa-Hi - Handcox 29 pass from Turner (Atkinson kick).
Davis - Lynn 17 pass from Wright (Guzman kick).
Davis - Chapman 54 pass from Wright (Guzman kick).
Davis - Kupp 47 pass from Wright (Guzman kick).
Wa-Hi - Atkinson 31 FG.
Davis - Trimble 4 pass from Wright (Guzman kick).
Davis - Guzman 33 FG.
Davis - Kupp 25 interception return (Guzman kick).
Wa-Hi - Rowley 6 pass from Turner (run failed).
Davis - Guzman 20 FG.
First downs 19 22
Rushes/yards 29-86 41-282
Passing yards 376 110
Passes (att-comp-int) 28-19-1 31-12-2
Punts 1-29 2-28.5
Fumbles-lost 3-1 1-0
Penalties-yards 8-39 5-38
RUSHING - Davis: Wright 9-57, Wagner 15-31, Sifuentes 5-(-2); Wa-Hi: Hoe 34-274, Turner 4-13, Porter 2-3, Team 1-(-8).
PASSING - Davis: Wright 19-28-1, 376 yards, 4 TDs; Wa-Hi: Turner 12-31-2, 110 yards, 2 TDs.
RECEIVING - Davis: Trimble 5-69-1, Chapman 4-86-1, Kupp 4-69-1, Perea Vijarro 3-82, Lynn 2-42-1, Sanders 1-28; Wa-Hi: Handcox 6-59-1, Rowley 3-10-1, Ferenz 1-25, Jameson 1-13, Hoe 1-3.