Reece Jenkin waited four weeks for this game. Impatiently, he would say. He didn’t want it to be the last.
So Jenkin, who had missed three games with a hip flexor injury, helped rally the Reardan Indians from a second-quarter snooze to a 35-20 win over Waterville in the first round of the State B-11 football playoffs on a sunny but cold Saturday afternoon.
It earns Jenkin and the fourth-ranked Indians (9-1) at least another game. They’ll meet DeSales next Saturday at 1 p.m. at Medical Lake.
Jenkin, a 175-pound junior who plays halfback and quarterback and in the defensive secondary, scored the first two touchdowns as the Indians dominated the first 15 minutes in mounting a 22-0 lead.
Rhett Soliday intercepted Waterville quarterback Keith Finkbeiner on the game’s first play, and the Indians, using a three-pronged attack that also included the slashing runs of Pete Eastman and passing and running of quarterback Soliday, scored the first three times they had the ball.
By then, Waterville (4-6) had run only 12 plays, and two were punts.
But in less than 5 minutes, the Shockers made a game of it. Finkbeiner threw two TD passes, the first a 48-yard shocker to Kellen Biggar, and Michael Brandt scored twice, one on a 22-yard pass from Finkbeiner, and it was 22-20.
“I think we got a little overconfident,” acknowledged Jenkin.
“We played a little soft the first half,” said coach Dan Graham. “We didn’t adjust very well and didn’t do a good job of keeping track of their (skill) people.”
“We went in at halftime and regrouped,” said Jenkin, noting the Indians “decided we wanted to play another week… . We came out (the second half) and took it to them.”
Against a pursuing Reardan defense, the Shockers couldn’t sustain a drive or mount a quick strike the second half like they did in the second quarter.
Jenkin, who gained 83 yards on 12 carries to augment the 106 yards of Eastman, ended Waterville’s last hope by intercepting Finkbeiner on the Reardan 4 with 2:15 to play.
A minute before, the Indians capped a 7-minute, 70-yard drive with Jenkin scoring from the 2.
Soliday hit 8 of 19 passes for 124 yards as the Indians outgained the Shockers 396-257.
DeSales 55, Wilbur-Creston 21
Brian Lindgren completed 18 of 25 passes for 409 yards and five touchdowns as the top-ranked Irish (9-1) raced past the Wildcats (7-3) at Lampson Stadium in Kennewick.
Joe Levens had seven receptions for 152 yards and Allen Stanley had six for 121.