As the Bellarmine Prep seniors prepared for their final game at Memorial Field, two things weighed heavy on their minds – winning their final appearance on their home field and clinching their third consecutive Narrows League 4A title. But Olympia – and their 6-foot-5 senior running back Cedar Frost – torched the Lions’ defense for 220 yards, and the Bears kept the Bellarmine Prep offense out of the end zone all night long as they took a 28-10 win on Oct. 25.
“Olympia just flat outplayed us,” said Bellarmine head coach Tom Larsen. “They beat us in every facet of the game.”
The Bears got things rolling on their second possession when quarterback Derrick Becker hit Colin Courter with a 5-yard scoring strike with 2:58 to go in the first quarter to give Olympia a lead they would not give up. The Bears added to the lead midway through the second quarter when Becker hit a wide-open Cooper Murphy for a 60-yard touchdown pass for a 14-0 lead. The Lions would finally find some semblance of an offense when Matt Phillichi hit a 42-yard field goal with 2:04 to go in the first half to cut it to 14-3 lead at halftime.
“We tried to make a few adjustments at the half, but it was more of the same in the second half,” Larsen said. “We ended up getting beat by a good football team.”
The Bears put the capper on this game with a classic drive on their first possession of the second half, marching 79 yards in 11 plays, with Becker scoring on a six-yard run with 3:27 left in the third quarter. Becker later added a 6-yard touchdown pass to Courter to give Olympia a commanding 28-7 lead.
Garrett McKay gave Lions fans something to shout about late, bringing a punt back 84 yards for a touchdown with 4:21 left in the game.
The win kept the Bears alive in the 4A playoff race, as they needed a win on Nov. 1 plus a win by South Kitsap over Central Kitsap. The Lions, meanwhile, will have another chance for the Narrows 4A title when they travel to take on Olympia – which currently sits alone in first place at 5-0 – at 7 p.m. on Nov. 1 at Roy Anderson Field.
“In addition to being outplayed (tonight), we missed some good scoring opportunities in the first half,” Larsen said. “As a result, we’ll have to travel to Gig Harbor to try and get that third consecutive title on Friday night.”