Catch up on archived RIVERHAWK REVIEW reports! Just click on the links below
Introducing the RIVERHAWK REVIEW (9/5) Richland @ CHS (9/19) CHS @ Walla Walla (10/17)
CHS @ Camas (9/5) CHS @ Southridge (9/25) Kennewick @ CHS (10/24)
CHS @ Wenatchee (9/12) October Games (10/1 - 10/17) CHS @ Pasco (10/31)
Follow THE RIVERHAWK REVIEW as Chiawana makes their way toward another title! Click on the links for the reports
11/7 vs LEWIS AND CLARK (Spokane)
Riverhawks 24, Tigers 0

11/15 vs A.C. DAVIS (Yakima)
Riverhawks 47, Pirates 7

11/22 vs GONZAGA PREP (Spokane)
Riverhawks 38, Bullpups 3

11/29 vs GRAHAM-KAPOWSIN (Graham)
Riverhawks 28, Eagles 12

12/6 vs The Bothell Cougars
Tacoma Dome - 7:30 pm

Monday, October 20, 2014

10/17 - The mighty Chiawana Riverhawks bedevil the Blue Devils in Walla Walla

October 17, 2014 - WALLA WALLA, WASH. - What a great day for football, indeed! The most important game on either team's regular season schedule must be this week's showdown here at Borleske Stadium[WIKI]. The air is hardly stirring, only an occasional breeze to remind the crowd that winter is on the way. The Chiawana Riverhawks (6-1, 5-0) and the Walla Walla Blue Devils (4-3, 4-1) compete for home field advantage come post-season. In addition, both teams bring win streaks to Walla Walla's homecoming game - the hosts have won four straight, and the Riverhawks have won five. One of those streaks ends tonight.

[I was late to the game. With 5:39 left in the first quarter, the score is 0-0.]
With about 4:50 left in the quarter, Walla Walla bombs an 88 yard pass for a touchdown. The extra point is no good, and the score stands at 6-0 with 4:46 to go in the quarter.

The Riverhawks start at their 35 with a pass for about twelve yards and a first down. A couple of gutsy runs later and the 'Hawks have another first down. Unable to generate any yards, they punt, and Walla Walla begins play at their own 25. A run for no gain ends the quarter.

End of 1st Quarter - Score: Riverhawks 0, Walla Walla 6 

Walla Walla has no success at a drive, and punts it. Chiawana begins at their 13, and they go with a ground-and-pound attack, grinding away at the game Blue Devils. Run after run rallies the Riverhawks to their own 40. A nice 50-yard pass puts the 'Hawks at the Walla Walla 8. Chiawana sticks with its bread-and-butter, and runs it in for a score. The extra point is good, and the mighty Chiawana Riverhawks take a 7-6 lead with 5:20 left in the half.
The Blue Devils go three-and-out, and Chiawana gets the ball near midfield. The Riverhawks get back on their horse and march the pigskin straight down the field, and across the plane. The extra point is good, and the Riverhawks extend their lead to 14-6.

End of 2nd Quarter - Score: Riverhawks 14, Walla Walla 6 

The Riverhawks start the second half at their own 20, and they pick up where they left off, with a relentless run attack. The 'Hawks benefit from some dazzling runs, when the drive sputters at the Blue Devil 37. Unable to generate a first down, the ball is turned over at the Walla Walla 32.
The Blue Devils start in the air with a couple of completions, but can manage nothing on the ground. The well-conditioned Riverhawk "D" stuffs Walla Walla, and the resulting punt puts Chiawana at their own 25.
The mighty Riverhawks start with - what else? - their bread-and-butter. A smash-mouth design and a penchant for clock management orchestrates this drive. Run play after run play chews up time and puts Chiawana at the Walla Walla 32.

End of 3rd Quarter - Score: Riverhawks 14, Walla Walla 6

The 'Hawks start the quarter with a nice pass that puts them three yards from pay dirt. A couple of run plays later and the mighty Riverhawks punch it through. The extra point keeps Chiawana rolling with a score of 21-6 with 10:20 to go in the third quarter.
After a nice run, the Blue Devils throw it on second down. The ball is picked, and the Riverhawks have it at their own 41.
After getting the ball to around midfield, Chiawana is forced to punt.
Walla Walla has good field position at their 32. They begin the drive with a couple of run plays, but then switch to the air with time being an issue. The drive went down field in fits and starts, with some nice strikes from the QB to the receivers. An eventual fade to the corner of the end zone beats the Chiawana defense for a touchdown. The extra point hits, and the feisty Blue Devils battle back to make the score 21-13 with 2:55 left in the game.
Walla Walla attempts an onside kick, with no success.
Again, with deliberation, the Riverhawks begin the mature game of clock control. Hand-off right, hand-off left; tick-tock, tick-tock. The last one puts the pigskin across the pylons at 1:02 left in the game, with a score of 28-13, after the extra point.
The Riverhawks attempt an onside kick, which the Blue Devils recover at their own 43. Going straight to the air, Walla Walla wings the oval down the gridiron with a purpose, and has time for one more play from just outside the red zone. On the last play of the game, those determined Blue Devils launch it in for six, and the game ends.

Final Score: Riverhawks 28, Blue Devils 19
Next Week's Game - vs. Kennewick (3-4, 2-3) @ Chiawana (6-1, 5-0) (Edgar Brown Stadium)

The Hawk Talker's Two Cents
If you noticed, I did not mention penalties at all during my game breakdown. You see, my philosophy is that good referees and umpires are never part of the story line. If, after a game, the discussion does not involve the conduct or participation of the officials, then they did their job well. On the other hand, if their involvement creates any sort of controversy or reason to talk when the game is over, then there is a problem. The problem is that the potentially dishonest actions of grown men interfere with the development and fine play of the boys in the game. For example, it isn't fair at all to any of the players when a team is recognized not for their great play against the defending state champions, but for having so much help from the officials that any accomplishment by the actual players is eclipsed by laughably inconsistent, one-sided and unfair calls on the field. What a shame that the Blue Devils, who actually made great things happen on the field, will be diminished by the folly of adult males. It is a distraction, and demonstrates a lack of integrity on the part of the officiating team. And it also takes me away from my usual comments in this section of the report. Moving on ...
Aside from the officiating, which kept the game much closer than it would have been without the additional and obvious help, the Walla Walla Blue Devils exposed a couple of potential weaknesses that other teams might be willing to attempt to exploit. For example, it is no secret that Chiawana has a strong ground game. If an opponent is able to shut down the run, it limits the offensive options and allows the defense to focus on the pass with more effect. Walla Walla had an interior lineman who continually ran down the best running back in the state. For some reason, this continued throughout the game, and was demonstrative of preparedness on the part of the Blue Devils. We never seemed to have an answer for that, and it could be something that an astute and capable team may exploit if there is no way to stop it.
While the Riverhawks are a well-rounded and strong team in general, there are always going to be soft areas. Our soft area is deep protection. For as many opponents as we have had who get desperate and begin throwing the ball due to a lopsided score, we should have more interceptions. Given the type of talent in the secondary, I am surprised that this statistic is what it is. Also, in almost every game, our defense has been beaten on a long ball. While this is not much of an issue when an opponent is on the ropes, it will be a factor in a closer game, and a good team will use this to their advantage.
Our next two games are against Kennewick and Pasco, respectively. These teams are mediocre, although it would be unwise to overlook either one of them. It seems that the teams faced this year all brought their "A" games. However, that not withstanding, if there is a chance to rotate players in the secondary, in case we need different match-ups in the playoffs, these two games provide our final opportunity to test the personnel on the field, no matter their positions.
I am proud of the way that the team withstood the potentially debilitating onslaught of yellow flags. It is always difficult to remain cool under such unfair circumstances, and our boys handled the barrage with dignity and valor. I attribute this to the mature example set by the coaches. Keep up the good work, team! We are all cheering for you!
Just my two cents. Please be sure to visit my sponsors. Thanks!

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 Hawk Talker is an enthusiastic fan of the Chiawana Riverhawks football team. His goal is to provide an accurate and honest review of each game in an effort to summarize the play of the team for others who may be interested. Please visit the links at the right of this page and participate in the poll when you have time. Thanks!

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