Alex Shoemaker, EDN
In a blowout that got ugly early, the Marist Spartans defeated the Summit Storm 53-8 Friday night at North Eugene High School.
Marist, as the No. 1 seed, will host Sandy at North Eugene in the OSAA 5A playoffs next week.
Five different Spartans scored touchdowns on the game, including starting quarterback Kamerun Smith, who finished with five through the air.
The Storm took over at their 40-yard line, but they would be forced to punt.
On the Spartans’ next possession, Marist scored on the first play on a 64-yard bubble screen to receiver Taylor Walcott. The extra point was missed, but the Spartans had a 13-0 advantage.
Later in the quarter, the Marist began a methodical drive starting on their side of the field that would finish with a 3-yard touchdown pass to Walcott in the corner of the end zone. Walcott, a senior and captain, finished the game with three touchdowns and a key interception on defense.
The Spartans missed the extra point again, but led 19-0 at the end of the first quarter.
Midway through the second quarter, Spartan running back Greg Park weaved his way through Summit defenders on his way to a 36-yard touchdown run to give the Spartans a 26-0 advantage.
On Summit’s next drive, Walcott picked off quarterback Max Lindsay. With the ball at the 25-yard line, Smith and Marist receiver Josh Paiement hook up for a touchdown, Paiement’s first of the game, giving Marist an overwhelming 33-0 lead.
Later in the quarter, Smith and Paiement connected again, this time for 20 yards as the Spartans extended their lead to 40.
After yet another 3-and-out by the Storm, the Spartans took over with less than two minutes remaining in the half. A quick drive bringing the ball near the red zone, Smith and Walcott connected again on a 20-yard touchdown reception which gave the Spartans a commanding 47-0 advantage at the half.
Both teams stalled on their opening drives of the third quarter, but a 67-yard TD pass from Lindsay to Storm senior receiver and captain Brennan Rooks finally put Summit on the board. After a successful two-point conversion, the score sat at 47-8.
With time running out in the fourth quarter, the Spartans managed one more touchdown, this time on a 1-yard run by sophomore Gavin Doremus.
The two-headed monster of Walcott and Smith proved to be an unstoppable force. After the game, Walcott said he and head coach Frank Geske were pleased with the teams play during the game.
“I think we played really well and coach wasn’t getting on us as usual,” Walcott explained. “We all played great and we got the W.”
As for his individual performance, Walcott said it’s all about the team.
“I think I played pretty well,” he stated. “There were a couple of times I got tackled at the one (yard line). But it’s a team effort. We got a win.”
The Spartans are one step closer to reaching the state championship, and this team believes they will compete for it.
“I think we’re going to state,” Walcott said. “We can win it.”
– Notes –
– Marist quarterback Kamerun Smith finishes game with 256 yards and 5 TDs.
– Spartans outscored Storm 47-0 in the first half.