MILL CITY — Two straight road playoff upsets over highly-seeded opponents was too much to ask of the Glide High football team.
The Wildcats fell 42-8 to host Santiam on Friday night in the quarterfinals of the OSAA Class 2A playoffs. The loss came a week after 13th-seeded Glide (6-5) ended a 36-year postseason victory drought with an overtime win at No. 4 Knappa.
Although Glide came up short in its bid for a state championship, senior tight end/defensive end Dillon Towne believes the Wildcats are on the verge of accomplishing big things in the future.
“Us seniors came in as freshmen and wanted to change the culture,” Towne said. “Glide football hadn’t been the greatest in a long time.”
Wildcats coach Jody Doty believes the seniors on this year’s squad accomplished their goal.
“This has been a phenomenal team of seniors,” Doty said. “We’ve watched them all four years and seen them progress and get better. They’ve established a tradition here at Glide football.
“We’ve seen numerous games where they’ve come out fighting to the end. These young men have set a great pattern for where we want to go with our program.”
A combination of five turnovers and a six-touchdown performance by Santiam running back Trevor Tinney did the Wildcats in Friday night.
The game started off disastrously for Glide as Tinney gashed the Wildcats’ defense for 201 yards and three touchdowns in the first quarter. Two of those TDs came immediately following Wildcats’ fumbles: Tinney rushed for 55 yards for his second score of the game following the first fumble, then hauled the ball 90 yards up the middle after Glide coughed up the ball deep in Wolverines territory, staking Santiam (9-1) to a 22-0 lead.
“He hit the hole hard,” Doty said of his team’s difficulties stopping Tinney early on. “Our kids were still trying to get into the game. We came out a little flat and it took us a while to get going.”
Glide struck back in the second quarter when junior quarterback Caidyn Cunningham connected with senior running back Zach Holland on a 10-yard touchdown pass. Holland then ran in the two-point conversion to cut the Wolverines’ lead to 22-8.
That was all the Wildcats could muster, though on the plus side they did hold Santiam scoreless for the remainder of the first half.
Tinney roared back with a vengeance for Santiam (9-1) in the second half, however. The senior — who finished with 321 total yards, 314 of them on the ground — scored on a 19-yard run following Glide’s third fumble of the game early in the third quarter and caught a 7-yard TD pass from Santiam quarterback Colin Thurston before the period was over as the Wolverines widened their lead to 36-8.
Tinney then capped his performance with a 10-yard touchdown run in the fourth quarter that all but sealed Glide’s fate.
While Towne had to tip his cap to Tinney for the athleticism he displayed, he said the Wildcats’ defensive line could have done more to contain him.
“We just didn’t execute very well,” Towne said. “Our line didn’t do things the way we could have and the way we should have.”
Towne had some parting advice for the players whom he hopes will take Glide even deeper into the playoffs in the seasons to come.
“I’d say Glide’s turned a corner,” Towne said. “If next year’s team stays in the weight room and trusts what coach Doty’s doing, it should go far.”
Glide 0 8 0 0 — 8
Santiam 22 0 14 6 — 42
S — Tinney 33 run (Tinney run), 9:39
S — Tinney 55 run (run failed), 4:38
S — Tinney 90 run (Forste run), 1:52
G — Holland 10 pass from Cunningham (Holland run), 8:11
S — Tinney 19 run (Tinney run), 8:07
S — Tinney 7 pass from Thurston (run failed), 1:21
S — Tinney 10 run (kick failed), 4:40