Coming off a huge win the week before against Cedar Park Christian, Charles Wright quickly eliminated any thought of a letdown against Vashon Island, scoring 28 first-quarter points on the way to a 44-20 win over the Pirates at home on Oct. 5.
The Tarriers recovered an onside kick on the opening kickoff at the Pirates’ 36-yard line, and running back Alexander Moore scored on a 10-yard run six plays later to make it 7-0. After a three-and-out defensively, Moore – the 1A state champ in the 100-meter dash last spring – raced 65 yards almost untouched on a sweep to make it 14-0 with less than five minutes gone.
“Our coaches told us we had to come out hard and fast, and play physical,” said Moore, who finished with five carries for 129 yards. “I think we accomplished that. I’ve got to give the credit to the line. They opened up huge holes and really helped me out.”
The Tarriers then recovered a fumble on the first play of the next drive, and Raheem Hughey made it 21-0 on a three-yard plunge two plays later. The defense forced another three-and-out, and the offense mounted an 11-play, 75-yard drive capped by Moore’s eight-yard touchdown catch to make it 28-0 at the end of the first quarter.
“I thought we fired on all cylinders,” said Charles Wright head coach Mike Finch, who also noted the play of the offensive line. “We’re big, we move people. That’s what they like to do, too. It’s cool.”
The first-half dominance was emphasized just before halftime, as Nick Ho intercepted a pass and raced 60 yards for a score with five seconds to go to make it 38-0.
“I didn’t really expect that,” said Moore, who also serves as a linebacker. “It was kind of like the cherry on top of the ice cream sundae…it was a good first half.”
The Pirates were able to creep back into the game facing mainly backups in the second half, and Vashon cut it to 38-20 when Sam Schoenberg hit Peter Evans for a 27-yard score early in the fourth quarter. But the Tarriers responded when Hughey capped a 10-play, 66-yard drive with a one-yard touchdown to put the game away for Charles Wright. Teaming with Moore to carry the offensive load with fellow running back Colin Reynolds sidelined, Hughey finished with 15 carries for 103 yards.
The Tarriers improved to 5-0 for the third time in program history, and the first time since 1989. Combined with the 27-20 victory at Cedar Park Christian on Sept. 28, the Tarriers have the inside track to the division title. With a win at Chimacum on Oct. 12, Charles Wright would host the Nisqually League championship game on Oct. 26.
“Two years ago I think we got the program started,” said Finch. “Last year we really pounded that foundation into the ground. I think that foundation is built…those are big program wins like last week, but I think we’re just going to continue to see more of those.”
For blog updates on this weekend’s featured games visit The Daily Mash-Up at http://www.tacomaweekly.com/dailymashup.