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Arlington stuns M-P, ends Tomahawks season
ARLINGTON It didnt matter that a Lake Stevens loss dashed their playoff dreams anyway.
Word of a Vikings loss to Everett made its way to the Arlington High School football stadium early in the game a loss that ended the chance of a three-way tie with Cascade for the third playoff slot and a tiebreaker game the next night but the Tomahawks 21-20 loss to Arlington still haunted the faces of the seniors as they trickled out of the visitors locker room to the bus 50 yards away.
A player slumped against the stadium, teammates stopping by to share a few quiet words before making their way to the bus for the long ride home.
For the senior-laden team, the one-point loss to Arlington wasnt supposed to happen.
After two dismal seasons with two wins each, M-P had put together four wins and the possibility of a postseason appearance. It seemed more than they had could have hoped for until toppling Lake Stevens at homecoming.
For nearly the entire team, it was their first winning season ever under first-year coach Brandon Carson. Even the coach struggled to find words after the Oct. 26 game.
There were a lot of tears in there. They played their guts out and just came up with the short end of the stick, he said.
Arlington played like a fire had been lit beneath them. And according to coach Tim Tramp, it had. After suffering a 42-6 beating at Cascade the week before, the Eagles looked like a new team.
With Arlington entering the game in contention for a 3A playoff slot, Tramp said the Eagles were less motivated by the upset factor against the 4A Marysville, and more by an outright postseason berth.
Like I said, I think it was a real boost for us. We had a real rough game last week against Cascade, and to play against a cross-town rival, a lot of kids know each other, so it was for bragging rights a little bit, he said. The fact that we dont have to play (a tiebreaker) Tuesday is relieving, that we dont have to play until Friday.
Arlington held the advantage in the 7-6 game at the end of the first quarter, thanks to a blocked extra point.
With about a minute left in the first half, sophomore quarterback Jake Parduhn found Josh Acker in the end zone, putting Arlington up 14-6.
M-P answered to tie it up before the end of the half. On the kickoff, Levi Cartas returned the ball for a touchdown, the Tomahawks getting the two-point conversion with the clock winding down.
On the opening drive of the second half, M-P scored again. With the help of a couple of critical fourth-down plays, the Tomahawk offense put together an 89-yard, eight-and-a-half-minute drive down the field, culminating in a keeper by quarterback Denay Stell into the end zone. Another blocked extra point, and M-P was up 20-14.
After trading punts, Arlington put together a game-winning two-play drive with 11 minutes left in the game. Taking over on their own 38-yard line, Arlington back Chris Myers connected with D.J. Lockwood on a 59-yard pass that set up a short run by Michael Keating into the end zone.
M-P tried to put together a comeback drive, and had the time to do it. Counting on their passing game, Stell and Cartas played catch down the field, the duos gains making up for losses to penalties and a recovered fumble. But Arlington caught on to their game and junior defensive back Alex Marshman picked off Stell at the Arlington 10-yard line with 41 seconds left in the game.
With eyes cast down and a few tears, the Tomahawks made their way to the bus, their season over.
Im at a loss for words, Carson said.