The Coeur d'Alene football team overcame off-the-field adversity to capture the 5A Inland Empire League's second state playoff berth Monday.
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By Greg Lee
The football team some thought was the best in the 5A Inland Empire League going into conference play will get a chance at redemption.
The Vikings (6-3) will get a shot at evening another score when
they take on league champion
LC upset CdA 23-15 two weeks ago. The Timberwolves clinched the
league championship last Friday with a 49-19 win at
“I would rather have just finished it the right way (in the regular season), but we’ll take it man,” CdA coach Shawn Amos said. “These kids …. Everybody had threw us under … we were done. Everybody starts jumping off the bandwagon pretty quick. These kids kept believing. We had some internal issues (we were) dealing with today. These guys believe. That’s all that matters. We found a way.”
The issue Amos alluded to was the suspension Monday of four players – seniors Cade Mendoza (free safety/wide receiver), Travis Jankey (lineman) and Alex Kastens (lineman) and junior reserve Ryan Fenter (lineman) – for athletic code violations. Amos confirmed the suspensions, saying the players also will miss the playoff opener.
Both of CdA’s wins in the tiebreaker came on big plays after quarterback Ryan Dunton had been sacked. In the first victory, Dunton found receiver Jake Matheson on a slant and he took it untouched 35 yards for a touchdown. In the second win, Dunton hit receiver Matt Lambert for a 34-yard TD. The speedy Lambert outraced a PF defensive back to the end zone.
“At least it was decided on the field and not by another funky thing I guess,” PF coach Jeff Hinz said. “It wasn’t where we wanted to finish, but I still think this group of guys – this senior class – set the tone on a lot of different things.”
“One mistake can kill you. One missed call can kill you,” Dougherty said. “That didn’t win or loss it for us. (But) that was a big play. We were in position to score if we get that (pass interference).”