DUFUR — In a matchup between teams that have enjoyed stellar success in recent years, the No. 8-seeded Camas Valley Hornets had hopes of getting an upset win over the No. 1 Dufur Rangers Saturday in an OSAA Class 1A eight-man football quarterfinal playoff game.
The Special District 2 West champion Hornets fell short of their goal, though, as the three-time defending state champion Rangers (11-0) won their 31st straight contest dating back to 2016 with a 64-20 romp at Dufur High School.
Camas Valley (7-2), guided by 19th-year head coach Eli Wolfe, was simply outplayed by a Dufur squad that’s seeking a four-peat. Dufur, which is seeking to capture its 10th football championship overall, advanced to the Nov. 16 semifinals and will meet No. 4 Hosanna Christian (9-0).
“I wish we would’ve played a little better and been a little more efficient, but Dufur played real well and you can’t come out and make mistakes against a team that’s good and well disciplined,” said Eli Wolfe, who guided the Hornets for the final time as he’s retiring. “Good teams capitalize on turnovers and there’s a reason that they’re three-time state champions. I’m disappointed with the results, but I’m not disappointed with our effort and I’m super proud of everyone on our team.”
The Hornets came into the contest on a seven-game winning streak and were seeking to reach the semis for the first time since 2014.
“We’re blessed to be out here playing this game that we love,” said Eli Wolfe. “Having a group of over 100 fans from our community and family members come after a five-hour road trip here to watch us play was just a real blessing, win or lose. We love coming to Dufur, because it’s a great town and good community, but we just got beat by a team that was just a little bit better than us.”
Dufur clearly had everything going its way while taking control of the contest early in building an 18-0 lead midway through the first quarter.
Following an exchange of possessions, the Hornets then took over at their own 10-yard line and had an impressive scoring drive to regain the momentum and perhaps give themselves at least a chance for a comeback.
An 11-play, 90-yard drive, highlighted by a 29-yard pass reception by junior receiver Tristan Casteel (four receptions, 122 yards), was capped by senior quarterback Bryson Wolfe’s 26-yard TD toss to Casteel.
“I was pretty upset that we were losing, but we were just trying to give it all of our effort throughout the entire game,” said Casteel. “I felt pretty good to score the touchdown at that point. We had a really solid team with a good group of seniors and we had a very good season. We’re hoping to come back and do pretty well again next year, too. I think we would’ve won if we could’ve executed better, but making seven turnovers in the first half really hurt us.”
Wolfe (7-for-14 passing, 152 yards) scored on a two-point conversion run, helping Camas Valley get back into the game while trailing 18-8 with 1:34 left in the quarter.
“We practiced hard all week to prepare for the game and felt like we knew what they (Dufur) were going to do,” said Bryson Wolfe. “We tried our best today, but things just didn’t work out for us. We knew that they had good team speed and were very quick. They ran the ball quick and were able to catch us out of position and we just couldn’t catch up to them. If we would’ve eliminated our turnovers and mistakes, it would’ve been a closer game. There’s a lot of teams that wished they could’ve reached the quarterfinals, so we were happy to be here.”
It was a short-lived momentum boost for Camas Valley, though, as Dufur scored just 15 seconds later to take a 24-8 advantage, which was the same score at the end of the quarter. Dufur then continued to roll offensively and built a 44-8 lead with 4:16 left in the second period.
Following an exchange of possessions, Camas Valley responded with a two-play, 73-yard scoring drive, capped by a 47-yard TD run by junior running back Jared Hunt (nine carries, 71 yards rushing), making it 44-14 with 38 seconds left in the quarter.
Dufur quickly added a TD on its ensuing possession to build an insurmountable 50-14 halftime lead.
The Hornets scored in the fourth, with senior running back Justin Standley (15 carries, 61 yards rushing) scoring on an 18-yard run, making it 64-20 with 2:56 remaining in the game.
“The seniors on our team are really special kids and they’ve meant a lot to Camas Valley High in the last four years and I’ve spent so much time with them and I admire the effort they’ve put in,” said an emotional and teary-eyed Eli Wolfe, who led Camas Valley to 1A state titles in 2011 and 2012. “I’ve been blessed with some amazing kids and some amazing parents and I think it’s just time for me to do something else.”
Dufur finished with a 377-284 edge in total offense. Tanner Masterson led the Rangers with 116 yards rushing and scored three times, while Asa Farrell added 80 yards and two scores.
The contest marked the final game of their Camas Valley High School careers for seniors Bridger Godfrey, Matt Powell, Nate Powell, Standley and Bryson Wolfe.
“We didn’t play too good today and Dufur definitely executed better than we did and they’re a very good team that really deserves to be ranked No. 1,” said Godfrey. “We were all ready to play tough, but we just made too many mistakes and weren’t ready to execute the plays.”
At halftime, community members from both Dufur and Camas Valley, who are former U.S. Armed Forces military veterans, were honored in a Veterans Day ceremony at midfield. Camas Valley residents who were honored with applause included Todd Mickelson, Tim Acrey, Brian Casteel, Tim Gary, Earl Tilton and Shawn Standley.
C. Valley 8 6 0 6 — 20
Dufur 24 26 14 0 — 64
D — Farrell 29 pass from Frakes (Frakes run)
D — Safety
D — Masterson 40 run (Kilby pass from Frakes)
CV — T. Casteel 26 pass from B. Wolfe (Wolfe run)
D — Farrell 60 run (pass failed)
D — Farrell 14 run (run failed)
D — Peters 19 fumble return (Kortge pass from Frakes)
D — Masterson 5 run (pass failed)
CV — Hunt 47 run (pass failed)
D — Farrell 11 pass from McLaughlin (run failed)
D — Farrell 54 pass from Frakes (Masterson run)
D — Masterson 58 run (pass failed)
CV — Ju. Standley 18 run (pass failed)