Undefeated Papermakers claim league championship

CHS football team to play Olympia in Week 10 playoff game

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Camas High School senior Blake Ascuitto throws a pass to senior Charlie Bump at Doc Harris Stadium on Nov. 2. (Wayne Havrelly/Post-Record)

The Camas High School (CHS) football team’s self-proclaimed revenge tour keeps getting sweeter.

The Papermakers clinched the 4A Greater St. Helens League championship with a 28-14 win over Union High School (UHS) at Doc Harris Stadium on Friday, Nov. 1, in the last game of the regular season.

CHS (9-0 overall, 4-0 4A GSHL) will host a Week 10 playoff game against Olympia High School (OHS) on Friday, Nov. 8. The winner of that game will advance to the 4A state tournament, while the loser will see its season come to an end.

The Bears finished in sixth place in the 4A South Puget Sound League with a 4-5 overall record. Two of their losses came to Sumner High School (31-10) and Skyview High School (53-14), teams that the Papermakers defeated.

“Playoff mentality is not much different because our opponents are faceless,” CHS coach Jon Eagle said. “The weekly process stays the same. The only difference is that it’s loser-out now. We need everyone’s best effort each day. We believe teams win games Monday through Thursday, and Friday takes care of itself.”

Papermakers beat rival Titans

After watching the Titans win league championships in the past two seasons and earning a 4A state championship last year, CHS had its sights set on defeating UHS this season. “We’ve been dreaming about it because we’ve been playing these guys (Union) forever,” said Papermakers senior quarterback Blake Ascuitto, who made his first start of the season after Jake Blair broke his collarbone during the Papermakers’ Oct. 24 game against Skyview High School.

Ascuitto said that the CHS defense should be given credit for the victory over the Titans, and Eagle couldn’t agree more.

“We played great team defense,” he said. “Three fourth-down stops, plus three interceptions? That says it all.”

Two of the interceptions were in the red zone. Papermakers junior nose guard Robert Silva had a stellar outing, recording a sack, three tackles for loss and many other big plays.

“Silva works hard, and it’s paying off,” Eagle said. “He plays with a great motor and leverage and is becoming a force for us on defense.”

Silva wasn’t completely satisfied, however.

“It’s always our goal to keep our opponents to seven points or under and we didn’t do that tonight, so we will work on it and get better,” he said.

Senior Charlie Bump, who snagged one of the Papermakers’ three interceptions, said beating UHS feels special.

“We didn’t really think it would be this close, but Union is a good team and came out strong and so did we,” Bump said. “In the end, we had really good team bonding that led up to this (win). This was the biggest game on our boxes and we just checked it off.”

CHS quarterback ‘easily the calmest dude out there’

Ascuitto set the tone early with a calm demeanor.

“(Ascuitto) was easily the calmest dude out there,” Bump said.

Ascuitto tossed a 54-yard touchdown to tight end Kenny Wright in the second quarter, and threw another touchdown strike to Jackson Preston in the third quarter.

CHS senior running back Tyler Forner put in another solid performance, running the ball 18 times for 74 yards and two touchdowns. He left the game in the second half with an ankle injury, but senior Randy Yaacoub stepped in and kept the ball moving on the ground, recording 76 yards on 14 carries.

“I just love every one of these guys,” said Yaacoub, who has repeatedly overcome injuries during his high school career and is elated to be healthy going into the playoffs.

Forner is expected to play against OHS.

Camas High School defensive players swarm a Union High School running back during the Papermakers' 28-14 victory at Doc Harris Stadium in Camas on Nov. 1.
Camas High School defensive players swarm a Union High School running back during the Papermakers' 28-14 victory at Doc Harris Stadium in Camas on Nov. 1. (Wayne Havrelly/Post-Record) Photo