O'Dea High School

Jamyn Patu rushes O’Dea past Meadowdale into 3A state title game

Posted November 27, 2016

O'Dea High School

The O’Dea Fighting Irish celebrate their 35-9 win in the State semifinal game against the Meadowdale Mavericks held at Pop Keeney Stadium in Bothell on Saturday, November 26, 2016. The running back rushed for 213 yards and three touchdowns as the Fighting Irish rolled over the Mavericks and into the title game where they will face Kamiakin.

When push came to shove, there was no way O’Dea was going to be pushed out short of the Class 3A state-championship game.

Junior running back Jamyn Patu and the Irish defense made sure of that.

Despite a slow start on both sides of the ball and the exit of starting quarterback Benjamin Beale, Patu came to life and so did the O’Dea defense as they dominated in the second half of a 35-9 victory over Meadowdale on Saturday in the state semifinals at Pop Keeney Stadium.

Patu finished with 213 yards rushing and three touchdowns on 14 carries as the Irish (14-0) cruised into the state finals for the eighth time in school history with third-string sophomore quarterback Emonte Scott taking over after Beale reinjured his knee on the Irish’s third play from scrimmage.

“It was tough, but we’ve dealt with (a quarterback injury) before and we’ve always got that next-man-up type of football mentality,” said Patu, a first-year player with the Irish after transferring from Rainier Beach. “We already know we have guys who back people up and we believe in them. It feels great with this group of guys. It’s a good group of guys and we can really do things.”

The O’Dea defense registered eight sacks after halftime and will be formidable against Kamiakin (11-2) in Friday’s Class 3A state title game at 7:30 p.m. in the Tacoma Dome if they play like they did Saturday.

“What allowed us to get going was our will coming together,” said O’Dea senior linebacker Tony Flor, whose two older brothers played on the last Irish team to reach the finals in 2011. “We don’t really slow down. We just speed up. That’s kind of how it’s been all year. We’ve faced adversity and been down before at halftime and we’ve lost a quarterback before.

“Our defense was just having fun, I think. I think everybody was pumped and we were just flying around. Our ‘D’ line killed it.”

Patu gave the Irish some breathing room at 21-9 when he went over right tackle and took it to the end zone for a 51-yard touchdown with 2:55 left in the third quarter.

Patu bounced down the left sideline and scampered into the end zone for a 25-yard touchdown run with j1:05 into the second half and that put O’Dea ahead to stay at 14-9.

Despite a slow start on both sides of the ball and the exit of starting quarterback Benjamin Beale, Patu came to life and so did the O’Dea defense as they dominated in the second half of a 35-9 victory over Meadowdale on Saturday in the state semifinals at Pop Keeney Stadium.

Patu finished with 213 yards rushing and three touchdowns on 14 carries as the Irish (14-0) cruised into the state finals for the eighth time in school history with third-string sophomore quarterback Emonte Scott taking over after Beale reinjured his knee on the Irish’s third play from scrimmage.

“It was tough, but we’ve dealt with (a quarterback injury) before and we’ve always got that next-man-up type of football mentality,” said Patu, a first-year player with the Irish after transferring from Rainier Beach. “We already know we have guys who back people up and we believe in them. It feels great with this group of guys. It’s a good group of guys and we can really do things.”

The O’Dea defense registered eight sacks after halftime and will be formidable against Kamiakin (11-2) in Friday’s Class 3A state title game at 7:30 p.m. in the Tacoma Dome if they play like they did Saturday.

“What allowed us to get going was our will coming together,” said O’Dea senior linebacker Tony Flor, whose two older brothers played on the last Irish team to reach the finals in 2011. “We don’t really slow down. We just speed up. That’s kind of how it’s been all year. We’ve faced adversity and been down before at halftime and we’ve lost a quarterback before.

“Our defense was just having fun, I think. I think everybody was pumped and we were just flying around. Our ‘D’ line killed it.”

Patu gave the Irish some breathing room at 21-9 when he went over right tackle and took it to the end zone for a 51-yard touchdown with 2:55 left in the third quarter.

Patu bounced down the left sideline and scampered into the end zone for a 25-yard touchdown run with j1:05 into the second half and that put O’Dea ahead to stay at 14-9.

The Irish defense did the rest, making Meadowdale’s first appearance in the state semifinals miserable in the final 24 minutes.

“I think their quarterback (Drew Tingstad) was probably the best we’ve faced all year,” said O’Dea coach Monte Kohler, who is in his 32nd year leading the Irish. “I think we wore them down, got some edge pressure and got to him that way. Early on, he moved and stepped way from our pressure.”

Trailing 14-9, Meadowdale (10-3) looked poised to take the lead on a big play with 9:55 left in the third quarter. Tingstad found a wide-open Haelin Roberts over the middle and it looked like he was headed to the end zone, but O’Dea cornerback Thomas Stowers chased him down from behind.

Roberts ended up at the Irish 4-yard line and four plays later Hunter Franco intercepted a lob pass by Tingstad in the end zone with 8:02 left in the third.

“We played better in the second half,” said Kohler, who got good play at quarterback from Scott despite his limited varsity experience. “(Meadowdale) took it to us early. We thought we’d get out of the chute a little better. I’m having so much fun. This is a great group of boys, each journey is different and this is pretty special. This is a special bunch.”

 

Click here to view the full article in The Seattle Times.