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Williams powers Challengers into quarterfinals

Regardless of what it looks like on the field, a win is a win.

"It was ugly," said Cascade Christian football coach Jon Gettman. "We didn't come out and play particularly sharp tonight. It wasn't our best showing at all, but you can't complain about a win, ever."

His team defeated Clatskanie, 40-26.

It wasn't the Challengers' finest performance, but they used big plays from their rushing attack and stifling second-half defense to roll past Clatskanie in the opening round of the Class 3A playoffs at Spiegelberg Stadium on Saturday.

The Challengers (9-2), No. 3 in the power rankings, will host No. 6 Sheridan, in the quarterfinals Friday or Saturday.

Cascade Christian struggled to stop the Tigers in the first half, particularly on the ground. It wasn't until the second half that the Challengers settled in and bottled up Clatskanie's run game, thanks to sophomore linebacker Brandon Williams and defensive adjustments made by Gettman.

"We had our outside backers attack more," said Gettman. "(Williams) made a number of tackles right at the line of scrimmage. He was fighting and scrapping in there. It was great to see."

Williams finished with 12 tackles — one going for a loss — and boosted Cascade Christian's ground game with two explosive plays.

Clinging to a 14-12 lead in the second quarter, Williams ripped off a 50-yard touchdown run, putting the Challengers up by two scores.

The Tigers were able to answer, but a Daniel Scottow touchdown pass to Wyatt Sosey before halftime, followed by a 52-yard dash to the end zone by Williams to start the third quarter, provided the Challengers with a comfortable 33-18 lead.

"He made two just great plays," said Gettman of Williams' touchdown runs. "(Garrett) Banks and Stick (Tyler Stickler) blocked for him and he just made a number of kids miss."

The Challengers rushed for 307 yards and four touchdowns. Williams had 164 yards on only six carries, and Stickler had 11 attempts for 60 yards and a score to go with two receptions for 58 yards and a touchdown.

Banks provided eight tackles for the Challenges and Tim Gettman added seven.

Shelby Grittman paced the Tigers on the ground with 131 on 16 carries.

"Overall, I just liked the kids' effort," said Gettman. "We got behind early, but they were never discouraged. They just put their heads down and played, which was great to see."

Clatskanie 6 12 0 8 — 26

Cascade Christian 14 13 6 7 — 40

C — Grittman 2 run (kick failed)

CC — Stickler 35 pass from Scottow (Beard kick)

CC — Scottow 1 run (Beard kick)

C — Puzey 18 run (run failed)

CC — Williams 50 run (Beard kick)

C — Engen 2 run (run failed)

CC — Sosey 14 pass from Scottow (kick failed)

CC — Williams 52 run (kick failed)

CC — Stickler 10 run (Beard kick)

C — Engen 10 pass from Puzey (Puzey to Engen)