WALLA WALLA — Davenport and DeSales combined for 865 yards of offense here at Ty Baffney Field Friday in District 7/9 loser-out football action.
The Gorillas missed a 33-yard extra point in the second overtime and DeSales’ Luis Contreras drilled his point-after to send DeSales into the Class 2B state football playoffs with a 42-41 win.
“We work hard all season and there were a lot of things (injuries) that have gone on all year,” Irish coach Mike Spiess said. “We persevered. We get another week.”
Davenport got on the board first, driving 74 yards as 6-foot-2, 210-pound Tommy Wilkie pounded in his first of five touchdowns for a 7-0 Gorilla lead with six minutes left in the first quarter.
On the ensuing Irish possession, DeSales took 75 seconds to tie the game on a Connor Richard-to-Darryl Galloway 28-yard scoring catch and run.
The Irish lost a fumble on their next possession at the Gorilla 25 as the first ended 7-7.
DeSales grabbed a 14-7 lead on a Richard-to-Galloway 39-yard bomb with 10:22 left in the half.
Wilkie answered with a 14-yard TD run, and the Irish coughed it up at the Davenport 17 with 20 seconds left to send the game to intermission at 14-all.
“We couldn’t stop them, and they couldn’t stop us,” Spiess said. “They did a good job of executing their offense and had a lot of razzle-dazzle. We made a lot of mistakes. We were stopping ourselves.”
The fumble bug continued as the Irish lost the second-half kickoff and Isaiah Scheel, who did not return to the game.
The Gorillas turned the turnover into a one-yard Wilkie plunge for a 21-14 lead with 7:46 left in the third.
A minute later, Davenport blew a coverage and Richard found Zach Leahy all alone on the far sideline for a 71-yard score.
The Irish lost another fumble before the quarter ended to set up the Gorillas at the Irish 40. Davenport capitalized as quarterback Nolan Lilje snuck in from the 2 with 9:29 to play for a 28-21 lead.
The Irish responded as Richard ran six times for 36 yards to lead the Irish on a 73-yard march. Richard’s two-yard run evened it at 28-28 with 4:08 left.
“We had no running backs (injuries) and we got in our empty formation,” Spiess said. “They were open in the middle. Connor is an excellent leader. That drive was all him. He was calling plays on his own.”
With 39 seconds left, the Gorillas reached the Irish 28 and looked to be in position for an attempt at a game-winning field goal.
But on third down, Braden Kimball broke through and dropped Wilkie for a seven-yard loss, and out of field goal range.
DeSales’ Matt Jubb knocked down the Gorilla fourth down pass and the Irish took over.
“They had been running that play all night,” Kimball said. “Coach called blitz from the outside and I came up and hit him. It was a good call and it worked out.”
Davenport went on offense to start the first overtime. After a false start penalty — one of 14 Davenport penalties — Wilkie broke a 21-yard run for a Gorilla score.
Richard hit Jackson Kent for a nine-yard TD as the Irish sent the game to the second overtime at 35-35.
The Gorillas, after Chris Faulkner took a direct snap and fooled everybody with a 20-yard burst up the middle to convert a fourth down into a first-and-goal at the Irish 3, scored on a Wilkie three-yard run. Cain Kern converted his sixth PAT, but the Gorillas were flagged for an illegal block and after the penalty walk off, Kern had his 33-yard PAT attempt go wide right and Davenport led 41-35.
Richard then hit Galloway on a third down pass from the 14. Galloway made a move to the inside and scooted in to tie the game once again.
“I saw an opening and had to work up field and try to get it into the end zone,” Galloway said. “I knew we wouldn’t get many chances, and we had to make it count.”
Enter Contreras. The snap from Tyler Jacobson was good, Galloway’s hold was good, and Contreras booted the game-winner down the middle for the 42-41 win.
“I zone out and think about how I’m going to kick it,” Contreras said. “I go into my own little world. It’s repetition.”
Wilkie led the Gorillas to 277 yards on the ground with 149 yards on 33 carries.
Davenport went for 426 yards of offense.
“He (Wilkie) knew what he was doing,” Kimball said. “He was running really hard. It (the last three wins in a row) is amazing what’s going on.”
Richard threw for 321 yards and five touchdowns, including nine balls to Galloway for 168 yards and three TDs.
“Connor has a cannon,” Galloway said. “He is a good quarterback, but without our O-line putting up a lot of protection, we don’t get those looks. They give us time, I get open, and Connor gets me the ball.”
The Irish, possibly without Scheel and Andrew Elmenhurst, both of whom sustained injuries, next travel to Ritzville to face defending state champion and undefeated Lind-Ritzville-Sprague in the first round of the state playoffs.
“This whole game was a re-grouping on our part,” Spiess concluded. “Our defensive coaches were scrambling all night. We kept hunting and pecking to find things that worked on offense. We found a way to win and for our reward, we get to play the defending state champions at Ritzville. We’ll see what happens.”
DeSales 42, Davenport 41
Davenport 7 7 7 7 7 6 — 41
DeSales 7 7 7 7 7 7 — 42
Dav — Wilkie 7 run (Kern kick).
DeS — Galloway 28 pass from Richard (Contreras kick).
DeS — Galloway 39 pass from Richard (Contreras kick).
Dav — Wilkie 14 run (Kern kick).
Dav — Wilkie 1 run (Kern kick).
DeS — Leahy 71 pass from Richard (Contreras kick).
Dav — Lilje 2 run (Kern kick).
DeS — Richard 2 run (Contreras kick).
Dav — Wilkie 21 run (Kern kick).
DeS — Kent 9 pass from Richard (Contreras kick).
Dav — Wilkie 3 run (kick failed).
DeS — Galloway 14 pass from Richard (Contreras kick).
First downs 18 13
Rushes/yards 58-277 19-118
Passing yards 149 321
Passes (att-comp-int) 19-11-0 31-19-0
Punts 0-0.0 0-0.0
Fumbles-lost 1-0 5-4
Penalties-yards 14-109 6-45
RUSHING — Dav: Wilkie 33-149-5, Plasencia 11-41, Faulkner 7-48, Zeller 3-17, Boggs 3-20, Lilje 1-2-1; DeS: Scheel 3-40, Richard 9-36-1, Healy 4-34, Galloway 2-13, Team 1-(-5).
PASSING — Dav: Lilje 11-19-0, 149 yards, 0 TDs; DeS: Richard 19-31-0, 321 yards, 5 TDs.
RECEIVING — Dav: Zeller 6-126, Boggs 2-10, Wilkie 2-10, Plasencia 1-0; DeS: Koopman 2-17, Galloway 9-168-3, Leahy 2-82-1, Scheel 1-5, Kent 4-38-1, Jacobson 1-11.