For the 30 high school seniors who grew up playing football together in Camas, Saturday was their last chance to do something special for the hometown at Doc Harris Stadium.
Nate Beasley rushed for 217 yards and four touchdowns. He also caught a 54-yard touchdown pass from Reilly Hennessey. This all came in the first half of a 63-28 victory for the Papermakers against Cascade, of Everett, in the first round of the state tournament.
“Greatness from the line, as always,” Beasley said of his blockers Drew Clarkson, Matt Danis, Chris Durrett, Payton Rusu and Matt Walser. “The line can only do their job for so long. I got to be able to out run those guys.”
Camas travels to Sammamish Saturday to play Eastlake in the quarterfinals. Kickoff is at 3 p.m. The winner goes to the Tacoma Dome.
Beasley delivered touchdown runs of 34, 33 and 40 yards in the first quarter against Cascade. He added a 48-yard mad dash to the end zone near the end of the second quarter.
“Whenever Nate has a good game, it’s a great reflection on how we’re doing,” Clarkson said. “It’s just cool when you see how much depth we have all over the field. Any person can make the big game-changing play at any time.”
Cascade responded with its second touchdown, but there was still enough time on the clock for Beasley and Hennessey to make one more big play before halftime.
“That ball was right on cue from Reilly. I had to speed up just to catch it,” Beasley said. “I’m going to remember this game for a long time, and I hope my teammates do too. This was our last game at Doc Harris. As a senior oriented team, that was all the motivation we needed.”
Zach Eagle returned an interception for a 54-yard touchdown to start the running clock for Camas a minute into the third quarter. He also snagged an 18-yard touchdown pass from Hennessey in the second quarter.
“As a father, it’s fun to see your son score two touchdowns in his last home game,” said head coach Jon Eagle. “Boy, that went fast.”
Eagle has a soft spot in his heart for the Camas football players he has coached since second and third grade. The Papermakers have only lost one game at Doc Harris Stadium in the last four years, back when these football players were on the freshmen team.
“These kids never lost here,” Eagle said. “We are tough to beat in this place. That’s something for our community to hang their hat on.”
Michael DiGenova caught a 48-yard touchdown pass from Hennessey on the first play in the third quarter. Hennessey completed seven passes for 171 yards and three touchdowns.
Cole Zarcone rushed for 107 yards in the third quarter, including a 22-yard touchdown run. Brian Kelly broke away for a 46-yard gain in the fourth quarter. The Papermakers ended both of those drives early on field goal attempts to keep from scoring 70 points.
“When you look at your last home game in high school, you want to do something you will remember forever,” Clarkson said. “I think everybody gave 110 percent. I feel proud just to be a part of it.”
Zach Eagle never missed a game his father coached. He would go to bed at night and dream of the opportunity to step on the field at Doc Harris Stadium.
“Growing up as a kid, and watching the varsity team play, all I could think about is the day I would be out there,” he said. “The time goes by super fast. I’m going to miss this place and all the awesome support from the community. I feel really blessed for every single time I got to play here.”