It is the school's first state championship in any sport and was celebrated by a large crowd that included hundreds of Makah tribal members.
TACOMA — His elbow ached. His thigh throbbed.
But the pain paled compared to the pleasure Titus Pascua felt after leading Neah Bay High School to a 36-28 victory over previously unbeaten Almira/Coulee-Hartline in the Class 1B state football championship Friday at the Tacoma Dome.
“All I feel is joy right now,” said Pascua, a senior who rushed for a game-high 187 yards on 30 carries in the eight-man game despite sitting out nearly a full quarter with the injuries. “It’s amazing. I feel incredible.”
It is the school’s first state championship in any sport and was celebrated by a large crowd that included hundreds of Makah tribal members. Afterward, many of them gathered with players and coaches for a victory song accompanied by a ceremonial drum.
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“This is for our community,” Pascua said. “This isn’t just for our team, this isn’t just for the seniors, it’s for our whole community, and all Native Americans.”
It was his 73-yard touchdown burst early in the third quarter that broke an 8-8 tie and put the Red Devils in front for good. He had to plead with his coaches to go back in the game after nearly hyperextending his left elbow making a tackle in the second quarter.
“They tried keeping me out, but I just told them I couldn’t come out,” Pascua said. “I told them, ‘This is the championship.’ “
Neah Bay (12-2) had lost to Lummi in the semifinals the past two years and owed this year’s two losses to the top-ranked Blackhawks, then beat them in the quarterfinals. Coach Tony McCaulley said those games gave his players the experience they needed to win the title.
Almira/Coulee-Hartline (13-1) had scored 40 or more points in every game this season.
“Defense won this for us,” McCaulley said.
The offense wasn’t bad, either. Sophomore quarterback Josiah Greene ran for 121 yards on 16 carries with two touchdowns, including a 38-yarder.
ACH closed to 36-28 on Derek Issak’s 29-yard touchdown toss to Thunder Wellhausen with 2:04 to go, but the Red Devils recovered the onside kick, then were able to run out the clock.
NB — Josiah Greene 1 run (Titus Pascua run)
ACH — Derek Isaak 24 run (Thunder Wellhausen pass from Isaak)
NB — Pascua 73 run (J. Greene run)
ACH — Isaak 58 run (run failed)
NB — Zeke Greene 13 pass from J. Greene (run failed)
NB — J. Greene 38 run (pass failed)
ACH — Collin Deyarmin 37 pass from Isaak (Isaak run)
NB — Tyler McCaulley 1 run (Z. Greene pass from J. Greene)
ACH — Wellhausen 29 pass from Isaak (pass failed)
|Time of Possession||14:32||33:28|
Rushing — ACH, Colin Deyarmin 6-15, Derek Issak 12-199, Broke Streeter 1-(-2). NB, Titus Pascua 30-187, Tyler McCaulley 3-11, Josiah Greene 16-121, Cody Cummins 7-28.
Passing — ACH, Isaak 8-17-0-145, Deyamin 0-1-0-0. NB, J. Greene 3-4-1-76.
Receiving — ACH, Deyarmin 5-94, Thunder Wellhausen 2-45, Mitchell Hunt 1-6. NB, McCaulley 1-40, Zeke Greene 2-36.