The Ballard coaches and players talked about how difficult it is to beat the same team twice in one season following Friday’s Metro League crossover football game between the Beavers and Ingraham at Seattle Memorial Stadium.
It may be a difficult task, but the Beavers (9-0) made it look easy with a 54-3 drubbing of the Rams (6-3). With the win, Ballard qualified for the Class 3A state preliminary round. Ingraham will play a Week 10 game, but it failed to qualify for the playoffs and hasn’t made it to state since winning the title in 1988.
The two teams met in Week 7 when both were undefeated. The Beavers got the best of the Rams that night by a score of 29-13.
Things started shaky for the Beavers. The Rams recovered an onside kick on the opening kickoff and kicked a field goal. Ballard fumbled on its first offensive play of the game, and the Rams recovered.
From that point on, it was all Ballard.
“I think it was just the belief in our week of practice,” Ballard coach Ross Humphries said. “We were confident in our game plan and had a great week of practice. Things definitely didn’t start out the way we anticipated, but our team is really close and we just knew that we just had to stay the course and not follow the emotion of the game.”
The Beavers did just that, scoring touchdowns on their next three offensive possessions to take a 21-3 lead early in the second quarter. Senior running back Jarman Hauser scored touchdowns on runs of 44 and 14 yards. He added a 15-yard touchdown run and finished with 94 yards on 11 carries to go along with his three touchdowns.
“I really want to give it to our (offensive) line,” Hauser said. “Without them, I don’t know where I would be. They blocked their (butts) off and gave me holes that I could run in. That’s how I mostly got all my runs.”
Hauser has been a big part of the Beavers’ offense all season for a team that is balanced throwing and passing.
“He’s a special player,” Humphries said. “Usually when you think of stud running backs, kind of a stereotype is that they are more selfish players and are more about their own ego. He’s anything but that.
“When he’s on the sideline when the other running backs are in, he’s a great teammate. He’s yelling and cheering on teammates. He just brings such an energy. You see the electrifying runs, but just his personality and who he is, he makes everyone around him better.”
The Beavers led 35-3 at halftime, thanks in part, to a 55-yard interception return for a touchdown by senior Dajean Wells with 20 seconds to play in the first half. The Beavers added another three touchdowns in the second half to make up the final margin of victory.
Also starring for the Beavers in the win was junior quarterback Ryan Blokker, who completed 11 of 12 passes for 154 yards and two touchdowns.
“He’s been great,” Humphries said. “We’ve been fortunate since he was a freshman, so he’s played a lot of football. Really, the last three or four weeks the game has clearly slowed down for him. We’ve condensed what we did and kind of found our offensive identity a little bit.”
The Rams’ six turnovers helped seal their fate, but coach Zach Elvig was still pleased with his team and where it is headed in the future.
“This group of seniors, they’re just good kids,” Elvig said. “They work hard and the do everything right. It’s a testament to who they are. Even tonight, it was a tough game, but they just kept going and kept fighting. The character that they showed, they’re going to be great, great men in this world, and I’m more than proud of them.”