Beavers Steal Win on the Road Over Titans in Pe Ell


PE ELL — In a game even the Tenino football team admitted they had no business winning, the Beavers managed to pull a rabbit out of their hats to steal a victory away from the clutches of Pe Ell-Willapa Valley Friday night, 20-7. 

The Titans controlled the game for about 46 minutes of gametime, before the Beavers capitalized on a critical mistake in the waning moments. 

“I think they beat us all the way through, we got lucky at the end,” Tenino coach Cary Nagel said. “They deserved to win that game, that’s a fantastic bunch, and we have a lot of work to do.”

With the Titans (0-1) leading 7-6 with around three minutes in regulation, it was the Beavers who first made what appeared to be a game-changing mistake. 

Backed near its own 20-yard line, Tenino’s punter muffed the snap and gave the Titans the ball back, in the red zone, with just minutes remaining and with the lead. It was one of many botched snap exchanges the Beavers endured all night, breaking in a new center and quarterback. 

But with their backs against the wall, the Beaver defense came up big, forcing a fumble near the goal line to get the ball back with about a minute and a half remaining. 

Forced to air it out with not much time remaining, Tenino quarterback Cody Strawn, who had struggled to run and handle snaps for most of the night, layed out a beauty for Max Craig for the go-ahead score on a long ball. 

It was the only completed pass of the night for both teams. 

“He’s our guy,” Nagel said of Strawn. “He was having a rough night, I kept telling him he’s our guy, we weren’t going to take him out. He responded when he needed to and when the team needed him, and that’s what you need in a quarterback.”

After the two-point conversion and an interception on the other end, Dylan Spicer tacked on a consolation touchdown at the end to make the game appear much less close than it actually was. 

Converted lineman Randy Marti and Spicer each rushed for over 100 yards and both scored touchdowns in the win. Lucas Watterson picked off the game-sealing PWV pass attempt. 

On the other side, the Titans were oh-so-close to earning a statement upset victory over a 1A quarterfinalist a year ago. Controlling the game in the trenches, offensively and defensively, PWV’s one mistake at the end spoiled what had been a very complete game on both sides. 

“Crap happens,” Titans coach Josh Fluke said. “It sucks, especially going up against that caliber of a team. That’s an excellent team. My boys came out and played a hard-nosed football game. There were some good hits, there were some ups and downs. It’s like getting your heart ripped out a little bit, but we have to regroup and get ready for Adna.”

New quarterback Kolton Fluke scored the lone touchdown for the Titans in the first quarter, a 7-yard scamper to put them ahead early. Blake Howard rushed for 59 yards as well. 

The Titans will take on Adna in a rivalry matchup next week on the road, while the Beavers hope to get ready for Sequim.