Utilizing a punishing ground game, the Mountlake Terrace Hawks rushed for 358 yards en route to a 28-14 victory over the visiting Shorecrest Scots Friday night at Edmonds Stadium. The victory keeps the Hawks’ slim hopes for postseason play alive and some momentum going into next week’s homecoming game against Shorewood.
Senior Chance Ragsdale was credited with 283 rushing yards on 33 carries, scoring on touchdown runs of 4, 17, 19 and 51 yards. Junior Malcolm Johnson picked up 78 yards rushing on 14 carries.
“I’m glad we were able to impose our physicality,” said Terrace Head Coach Tony Umayam. “The offensive line did a nice job taking over when they needed to. And Malcolm Johnson and Chance Ragsdale ran their rear ends off.”
Although Shorecrest was also able to move the ball some, their reliance on a more balanced attack and wanting to throw the ball more often was hampered by both constant pressure from the Hawk defensive front four and a thick fog that covered the field in the second half.
“I don’t know what happened at halftime, but, boy, the visibility was bad,” Umayam stated. “We don’t mind it because we want to play smash mouth football anyway.”
Hawk quarterback Justin Hopkins attempted just seven passes in the game, completing three for 7 yards; the Scots’ Nik Hendricks completed 14 of 20 attempts for 119 yards and one touchdown. And while the Shorecrest running attack did gain 177 yards, they couldn’t match the effort of Hawks’ Ragsdale and Johnson.
After Hawk Devante Downs was lost to the team because of his high school career-ending ACL injury last June, Johnson was expected to take his spot in the fullback position for Terrace. But the 5-10, 220-pound running back was unavailable to play in the first four games of the year, moving Ragsdale into that spot. Johnson became eligible to play on Oct. 4 and his presence in the lineup is paying off for the team.
“Now we’re just starting to come together and they’re getting used to playing together,” Umayam noted. “They’re getting used to playing their more natural positions. When Malcolm became eligible, Chance could move back to the position that he played when Devante played.”
Following the game the Terrace locker room was alive with celebration from players and coaches alike. “It was one of those weeks where we had to vent out a lot of stuff,” Umayam explained. “We really had to come together. There were some internal things we had to handle. The coaches, we had meetings with players, players had meetings with players; it all came out for the positive. I’m glad that the guys responded well.”
MTHS Football: Mountlake Terrace 28 – Shorecrest 14
Shorecrest 0 0 14 0 — 14
Mountlake Terrace 7 7 7 7 — 28
Scoring plays: MTHS’ Chance Ragsdale touchdown runs of 17, 51, 19 and 4 yards; Shorecrest’s Aaron Kelly 8-yard pass reception from Nik Hendricks, and Shorecrest’s Matt Brennan touchdown run of 72 yards
Records: Mountlake Terrace 1-2 in Wesco league play, 3-4 overall; Shorecrest 0-4, 1-6
MTHS next game: versus Shorewood (homecoming game), Friday, Oct. 25, 8 p.m., Edmonds Stadium
— By Doug Petrowski