The Bobcats couldn’t keep the Panthers down Friday.
“These kids just continue to fight in the face of adversity. We didn’t take the lead until the final four minutes of the game. That’s how long we had to battle to make it happen,” said head coach Bob Jacobs. “As long as we continue to compete and work hard, we can achieve things we never thought we could achieve.”
A 16-0 scoring barrage in the fourth quarter helped Washougal beat Aberdeen 28-21. The Panthers remain undefeated on their new home turf at Fishback Stadium.
“Playing at home has been a good thing for us,” Jacobs said. “The support we get from the community is huge. It motivates our kids to play beyond their expectations.”
Aberdeen built a 14-0 advantage in the first quarter, before Washougal started making waves. Luke Hiersche and Tristan Roseff caught touchdown passes from Chase Duey.
“The crowd wasn’t into it at first. Once we started making plays, it got crazy,” Hiersche said. “They definitely helped us gain the momentum.”
The Panthers failed to connect on their 2-point conversion passes after those touchdowns. They trailed 14-12 at halftime. The Bobcats added a touchdown in the third quarter to increase their lead to 21-12.
Hiersche tackled the Aberdeen running back in the end zone to cause a safety. From then on, it was all Washougal.
“They were getting tired and I was getting tired, but I knew we could win the game,” Hiersche said. “I just told myself and my teammates to keep going.”
Bobby Jacobs got the Panthers within one point on a 20-yard touchdown run. Washougal attempted to grab the lead on a 2-point conversion, but it failed.
The Panthers recovered the football on a fumble. Bobby Jacobs broke loose again for a 42-yard touchdown run. Adam Thomas carried in the 2-point conversion to put the Panthers up by seven points.
“Our whole offense gave me great protection, and a hole just opened up,” Bobby Jacobs said. “We got really lucky on that one.”
Washougal made one final stop with an interception, and then ran out the clock.
“We really came together as a team,” Bobby Jacobs said. “This was our best game of the season.”
The Panthers head to Longview Memorial Stadium Friday, to play Mark Morris. Washougal hosts Hockinson Friday, Nov. 1.
“We want to win this game for our town so we can come back and play in front of them one more time,”Hiersche said. “Just go out with a bang.”