SUNNYSIDE, Wash. — Sunnyside Christian’s defensive game plan worked on one level here Thursday night in a Southeast 1B-8 League football game at Sunnyside High School.
The Knights were determined to take Jose Martinez, Touchet’s 200-pound senior power back, out of the equation. And for the most part they succeeded, limiting Martinez to 32 yards rushing on seven carries.
Just as impressively, they kept Martinez out of the end zone.
“That hasn’t happened in a long, long time,” Touchet coach Gary Dorman would surmise after the game.
But this year’s Indians are a versatile group. They’re loaded with offensive weapons, and on Thursday night it was Octavio Preciado’s time to shine.
Preciado, a 160-pound senior who lost out to junior Elias Martinez a year ago in a battle for Touchet’s starting quarterback position, ran for 166 yards and two touchdowns and snagged two of Elias Martinez’s three touchdown passes as the Indians finished off the regular season with a 60-20 victory over the Knights.
“Octavio had a breakout game,” Dorman said. “Sunnyside Christian is a little bit bigger than us, and they were stacking up their defensive line to stop Jose. So Octavio steps up and averages about 15 yards a carry and makes a couple of big catches for us.”
The Indians improved their final regular-season record to 8-1 and finished second in the conference with a 6-1 mark. They’ll be back on their home field this weekend, either Friday or Saturday, to open the Class 1B-8 postseason.
“We will play the winner of the Odessa-Harrington-Wellpinit game,” Dorman said, referencing tonight’s Northeast 1B-8 League game in Wellpinit.
Wellpinit is 7-2 on the season and in second place in the Northeast League’s Northern Division. Odessa-Harrington is third in the Southern Division, and its 6-3 record includes a 60-42 non-league loss at Touchet on Sept. 14.
“We won’t know until probably Monday morning if it will be a Friday or Saturday game,” Dorman said of the upcoming playoff game. “It’s up to the other team, but either way we know it is going to be a tough, physical game.”
The Indians scored the first three touchdowns here Thursday. Preciado rambled 71 yards for the first, Elias Martinez scored the second on a 7-yard run and Elias Martinez and Preciado hooked up on a 26-yard pass for the third.
But Indians two-point conversion runs were thwarted following each score.
And when Sunnyside Christian responded with back-to-back touchdowns and one successful conversion, the Knights were within 18-14 with intermission drawing near. Drew Puterbaugh scored SSC’s first TD on a 23-yard pass from Wyatt Hoff, and John Newhouse scored the second on a 2-yard run. Newhouse also ran for two points following the first Knights score.
However, Elias Martinez’s 37-yard scoring run just before halftime gave Touchet a 24-14 halftime advantage. And his 21-yard TD run followed by Touchet’s first successful two-pointer, a pass from Elias Martinez to Cori Ochoa, finally gave the Indians some breathing room at 32-14.
Brandon Broersma caught an 18-yard touchdown from Hoff to keep the home team within hailing distance briefly. But the Indians scored the game’s final four touchdowns.
Elias Martinez tossed TD passes of 53 yards to Preciado and 20 yards to Ochoa, Preciado broke a 45-yard run for his fourth touchdown of the game, and Cesar Velasquez added a 5-yard TD run.
Preciado added 145 yards receiving on four catches to his 166 rushing yards on the ground. Elias Martinez garnered 95 yards on six rushing attempts and completed 4-of-6 passes for 125 yards and three scores.
Newhouse led the Knights’ ground game with 100 yards on 25 carries. Hoff completed 8-of-20 passes for 150 yards, and Puterbaugh made three of those catches for 86 yards. Broersma also had three receptions for 46 yards.
The Knights finished their season with a 2-5 league record, 3-7 overall.
Touchet 12 12 14 22 — 60
Sunnyside Christian 0 14 6 0 — 20
Tou — Preciado 71 run (run failed).
Tou — E. Martinez 7 run (run failed).
Tou — Preciado 26 pass from E. Martinez (run failed).
SSC — Puterbaugh 23 pass from Hoff (Newhouse run).
SSC — Newhouse 2 run (pass failed).
Tou — E. Martinez 37 run (run failed).
Tou — E. Martinez 21 run (Ochoa pass from E. Martinez).
SSC — Broersma 18 pass from Hoff (run failed).
Tou — Preciado 53 pass from E. Martinez (run failed).
Tou — Ochoa 20 pass from E. Martinez (Ochoa pass from E. Martinez).
Tou — Preciado 45 run (Flores pass from E. Martinez).
Tou — Velasquez 5 run (run failed).
Touchet Sunnyside Christian
First downs 15 15
Rushes/yards 33-357 51-143
Passing yards 151 150
Passes (att-comp-int) 7-5-0 21-8-2
Punts 0-0 3-40
Fumbles-lost 2-1 2-1
Penalties-yards 6-50 4-22
RUSHING — Touchet: Preciado 13-166, E. Martinez 6-95, Flores 1-37, J. Martinez 7-32, Col. McKeown 1-4, Velasquez 2-6, Goble 3-17; SSC: Wavrin 20-49, Hoff 3-(-12), Newhouse 25-100, Bangs 3-6.
PASSING — Touchet: E. Martinez 4-6-0, 125 yards, 3 touchdowns; Preciado 1-1-0, 26 yards. SSC: Hoff 8-20-2, 150 yards, 2 touchdowns; Heffron 0-1-0.
RECEIVING — Touchet: Preciado 3-85-2, Ochoa 1-40-1, E. Martinez 1-26-0; SSC: Wavrin 2-17-0, Puterbaugh 3-86-1, Broersma 3-47-1.