The sky’s the limit for Bothell High’s football team, according to senior Riley Morrison.
Following a 31-0 victory over Northshore rival North Creek High in a 4A KingCo matchup on Friday night at a jam-packed Pop Keeney Stadium, the Cougars loaded onto their buses back to the high school with eye black smeared on their grinning faces.
Bothell upped its overall record to 3-1 in the opening 4A KingCo contest while North Creek dropped its first game of the season and now stands at 3-1 overall.
“I think we’re finally starting to come together, we’re working together as a unit, work for each other more than individuals,” said Morrison, who scored a touchdown and snagged an interception in the end zone on Friday.
Bothell unleashed both short and long scoring drives against North Creek to earn the victory.
Senior quarterback Erik Bainter hooked up with Morrison for a 39-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter and then paired up with junior Christian Galvan for a 56-yard scoring pass in the third quarter. Galvan and senior Kainoa China also tallied on 1-yard runs in the second quarter, and senior Mason Locknane added a 30-yard field to start the scoring to go along with four PATs.
“We got a good line, we got a group of kids that’s all tight together. We fight hard together, and everything we do is together,” Bainter said.
On one scoring drive, Bothell notched two fourth-down conversions, and on another touchdown trek, Bainter reeled off a 29-yard run. Like he did during his touchdown reception and run, Morrison evaded a bevy of North Creek defenders on a 28-yarder on Bothell’s opening drive toward a field goal.
“I’ve just always grown up (thinking), after I get the ball, try to make something happen. That’s what I tried to do tonight and I couldn’t have done it without my teammates. I think it was just a good team effort,” Morrison said.
Bainter knows there’s much more to be achieved on the field for Bothell in its upcoming tough 4A KingCo contests.
“We got to work hard every day, we got to get better. We missed a lot of things tonight — our line, me, our receivers, our backs, we all missed something. We can always get better,” said Bainter, who was 13-for-27 passing for 272 yards.
In his team’s first loss of the season, North Creek sophomore quarterback Jack Charlton led his squad on two impressive third-quarter drives. Senior running Shea Hoogerwerf rumbled for a ton of yards during the drives and Charlton connected on passes with sophomore Abe Woodward (28 and 40 yards), sophomore Chris Jenkins and junior John McAteer. Those two drives ended with an interception and a Bothell stop on fourth-and-goal from the 3.
Charlton praised his offensive line for protecting him and said he feels comfortable in the quarterback spot.
“I feel like we gave a 100 percent effort and I feel like we showed some good stuff tonight,” said Charlton, noting that North Creek’s first three wins were also solid efforts and Bothell provided a challenge on Friday. “We’ve gotta take the little things. This game was a lot closer than the score tells us. If we fix the little things, we’ll be fine.”
Bolstered by Trevor Thurman’s 112 yards rushing and three touchdowns, Inglemoor defeated Redmond, 34-10, on Friday. Thurman toted the ball 10 times and hit the end zone on runs of 19, 12 and 2 yards.
On the passing and receiving front, quarterback Kolby Solomon connected with Luke Millman for a 32-yard TD and with Quentin Moore on a 56-yard TD. Solomon was 17-for-25 passing for 181 yards, hooking up with Millman nine times for 84 yards and with Moore twice for 67 yards. Braden Dick and Timur Akdemir notched two PATs each for the Vikings, who amassed 453 yards of offense and 25 first downs.
In upcoming games at Pop Keeney, Bothell will host Skyline at 7 p.m. this Thursday and North Creek will take on Inglemoor at 7 p.m. Friday.