Eastside Catholic rebounds with a 41-12 dismantling of Bishop Blanchet
The Crusaders jumped to a 27-0 lead by halftime behind three touchdowns from quarterback Harley Kirsch.
Seattle Times staff reporter
SAMMAMISH — After Eastside Catholic’s loss to O’Dea last Friday, Crusaders coach Jeremy Thielbahr said he wanted his team to execute at a higher level.
The Crusaders responded with a bang to close out the regular season.
Entering Friday night’s game with just one loss, Bishop Blanchet was outmatched by division foe Eastside Catholic, which rolled to a 41-12 victory in its homecoming game.
“It’s such a special night,” Eastside Catholic senior Elisha Pa’aga said. “Just to have a night when everyone’s contributing to win, and everybody was playing for the seniors, altogether it was just a fun night.”
It was an especially memorable night for Pa’aga, who does most of his damage on defense but rushed for a touchdown in his final home game. He was then named Eastside Catholic’s homecoming king at halftime.
The Crusaders (6-2, 4-1 Metro League) were leading 27-0 by that point behind three touchdowns from quarterback Harley Kirsch.
After a scoreless third quarter in which Blanchet struggled to move the ball, Crusaders senior running back Henry Jarvis punched in a three-yard touchdown to give his team a 34-0 edge with 11 minutes remaining.
“They were very stingy on defense,” Blanchet coach Aaron Maul said. “I don’t think we played our best game tonight, but we’ll learn from this, and we’ll take it into account as we head into the playoffs.”
The Braves (6-2, 3-2) managed to get on the scoreboard in the fourth period, when quarterback Alex Freeman and wide receiver Clinton Allen hooked up for a pair of touchdowns.
Jarvis finished with 134 all-purpose yards, while fellow senior Colin MacIlvennie had 11 catches and a couple of touchdowns as the Crusaders racked up 593 total yards to Blanchet’s 214.
“I believe we can make a run in November,” Thielbahr said. “There’s a lot of great teams out there, and we’re excited to take our shot at the playoffs.”