- About Us
Playoff-bound Auburn Riverside downs mistake-prone Auburn, 20-7 | Prep football | SLIDESHOW
A pair of fumbles on crucial drives doomed Auburn on Friday, as Auburn Riverside soared to a 20-7 victory over the Trojans in the Fugate Trophy game at Auburn Memorial Stadium.
The win earns a postseason berth for the Ravens (7-1 South Puget Sound League North 4A, 7-2 overall), who will host WesCo 4A No. 2 Cascade (8-1) at 7 p.m. next Friday for a chance to move on to the state playoffs.
For Auburn (5-3, 5-4), who came in knotted up at 5-2 with Jefferson and Tahoma in the SPSL 4A standings, the loss leaves the Trojans the odd team out for two playoff berths.
Against Auburn Riverside, the Trojans started strong, putting together a nine play, 80-yard drive capped by senior quarterback Brier Atkinson's 1-yard touchdown run with 8 minutes, 26 seconds left in the first quarter.
The Ravens responded in the second quarter, capitalizing on an Auburn fumble to put up three points on a Brandon Starks 31-yard field goal.
Auburn Riverside added two more touchdowns in the second quarter, with Cole Huckaby running one in from 7 yards out and Kevin Thomson finding Gavin Hettinger in the corner of the end zone for a 29-yard scoring play.
In the second half, the Ravens closed out scoring with Starks booting a field goal from 44 yards out in the third quarter, pegging the final at 20-7.
"This means more than anything," Auburn Riverside coach Bryant Thomas said. "That was my message all week long: this is more important than the playoffs. We want to be seen in the same light as Auburn, and we know we have a long way to go. They've got tradition there, but we're trying to establish tradition here. The only way you can start to establish tradition is to try and beat some of these team's that have tradition. We got one this year."
Auburn finished the game with the edge in rushing yards with 278.
Kieo Buchanan led the way with 117 yards on 16 carries, with Ercle Terrell adding 14 carries for 114 yards. Atkinson had 18 carries for 43 yards.
"That's a great coaching staff, great team," Thomas said. "I've got all the respect in the world for Gordy (Gordon Elliot). It just feels good to come out and play the way we played."
For Auburn Riverside, Huckaby paced the team with 28 carries for 181 yards and a TD. Thomson added 33 yards on seven touches and 6-of-13 passing for 73 yards, a touchdown and an interception.
"Our kids played hard, they played physical," Thomas said. "We didn't break. We bent and we bent but we didn't break. My defensive coordinator, Robert Middleton, did a great job. We changed up our defense. We're not a 37 stack defense. But we changed it up, and he did a great job of implementing it and getting it ready all week.
"We're going to enjoy this tonight," Thomas added. "The coaches will get started tomorrow on next week, but I'm going to let the kids enjoy it and have a blast. They deserve it. That trophy left us for one year and now it's back."