WALLA WALLA — Touchet’s first appearance in the Class 1B state football semifinals since 2006 has been scheduled for 6 p.m. Saturday at Edgar Brown Stadium in Pasco.
“We’re very pleased with the decision to play the game in Pasco,” Indians coach Gary Dorman said. “Who wouldn’t want to be playing in their own backyard?”
The Indians, who improved to 11-1 with a 36-14 quarterfinal victory over Wilbur-Creston Saturday afternoon in Spokane, are matched against Rosalia, which is 9-2 following its 76-32 Friday night quarterfinal win over Colton in Clarkston.
Both schools represent District 9, but Rosalia played an independent schedule this season after ending a sports co-op with Tekoa and Oakesdale last spring and dropping down to the 8-man ranks. The Indians were co-champions of the Southeast 1B District along with Colton and Liberty Christian during the regular season.
Saturday’s 6 p.m. game will be the third game of a playoff tripleheader at Edgar Brown. Federal Way crosses the mountains to take on Chiawana at noon in a Class 4A semifinal battle and Tumwater does likewise and will meet Prosser at 3 p.m. in a Class 2A semi.
Joe Albi Stadium in Spokane and Lions Field in Moses Lake are the sites of the other eastside semifinals Saturday.
Shadle Park squares off against Bellevue at 1 p.m. in Spokane in a Class 3A clash and Cashmere tackles Freeman at 4 p.m. in a Class 1A tilt. Ellensburg meets Lynden at 1 p.m. in the other Class 2A semifinal in Moses Lake and Adna takes on undefeated and defending Class 2B state champion Lind-Ritzville-Sprague at 4 p.m..
Adna ended Waitsburg-Prescott’s season two weeks ago in the first round while Lind-Ritzville-Sprague ousted DeSales.
Everyone will be trying to reach the annual Gridiron Classic state championship games that will be played Dec. 6-7 in the Tacoma Dome.
The Indians have played in the state finals eight times and claimed four championships dating back to their first appearance in 1979. They last appeared in the state finals in 2003 when they lost to SE1B District rival Lacrosse-Washtucna 38-6.
In Touchet’s last trip to the semifinals in 2006, the Indians lost to Lummi 26-20.
For Dorman, who assumed the head coaching reins in 2009, this will be his first appearance in the semifinals as head coach. The Indians were ousted in the quarterfinals in each of the past two seasons, losing to Almira-Coulee-Hartline 52-8 in 2011 and to Cusick 44-38 in 2012.
The winner of the Touchet-Rosalia game will face either No. 1-ranked Neah Bay or Lummi in the 8-man state finals Dec. 6 in the Tacoma Dome. Neah Bay and Lummi square off Friday in a 4 p.m. semifinal game in the Tacoma Dome.
In the other westside semifinals in Tacoma, Eastside Catholic plays O’Dea Friday at 7 p.m. to decide a ticket to the Class 3A championship game. Then, in a Saturday tripleheader, it’s Mount Baker vs. Cascade Christian in a Class 1A semifinal at 1 p.m., Raymond vs. Morton-White Pass at 4:30 p.m. in a Class 2B affair and Bellarmine Prep vs. Camas at 7:30 p.m. in Class 4A play.Rosalia enters the semifinals fresh off a 76-32 win against Colton last weekend.