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Sunday, November 4, 2012 - Page updated at 11:00 p.m.

Eastside Catholic holds off Meadowdale 27-13

By Jayson Jenks
Seattle Times staff reporter

SAMMAMISH — There are perks that come with being a senior quarterback, such as having the experience to read a defense and then change the play accordingly.

Yet that's only one side of the coin. The other? If you're the senior quarterback and your audible doesn't work, there's no one else to shoulder the responsibility.

In the deciding moment of No. 3 Eastside Catholic's 27-13 win against Meadowdale on Saturday in the round of 32, Eastside Catholic senior quarterback Trey Reynolds stepped to the line on fourth-and-goal from the 6, looked over the defense and decided a new play should be called.

So he did it.

Reynolds then hit fellow senior Hayden Meier in the back of the end zone for a touchdown, giving the Crusaders a 20-13 lead in the fourth quarter that would prove enough.

"I would have probably gotten screamed at pretty bad if that didn't work out," Reynolds said, "but we're lucky that it did."

Simply going for it proved gutsy considering the Crusaders led by just a point, and a field goal would have required the Mavericks to score a touchdown to take the lead.

But Eastside Catholic coach Jeremy Thielbahr and defensive coordinator Rob Christoff had confidence in a defense that held Meadowdale to less than 100 yards after halftime.

"Against a team like Meadowdale, you have to make gutsy calls," Thielbahr said. "And it was. It was a tough decision. We talked about it as a staff, and we made a decision to go for it. We felt like if we didn't get it, we had them pinned."

Reynolds then hit Colin Boit for a 31-yard touchdown pass later in the fourth quarter, and that was more than enough points for the Eastside Catholic defense.

Meadowdale jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the first half, and even though Eastside Catholic (10-0) led 14-13 at halftime, Reynolds said his team needed a wake-up call in the locker room.

"We came out flat in the first half," Reynolds said. "We weren't used to the physicality. I got to hand it to them: their line and their linebackers are really good. The whole first half, we were kind of getting dominated."

Meadowdale (7-3), which battled injuries at the end of the year, played without running back Giavani Shepard but did have running back Morgan Masanda.

Meadowdale sophomore quarterback Malik Braxton scored both Mavericks touchdowns. The Mavericks were shut out in the second half, though they did give the Crusaders their first test in a while.

"We haven't been in that many games as of late," Thielbahr said, "so this felt good to see how we reacted to adversity."

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