The Timberlake Tigers remained undefeated on the season after defeating Medford 66-36.
The Tigers sit three wins away from clinching the district win and having the first two rounds of playoffs on their home field.
Medford began the game with the ball on their 45-yard line. The first run play of the drive saw the Cardinals move to the Timberlake side of the field, but four plays later the Cardinals were unable to pick up a first down on the Tiger’s 35-yard line.
Timberlake’s first drive was an unusual one. The Tigers moved the ball 75 yards in six plays, but only one play was for positive yardage and that was the touchdown pass from Ethan Jenlink to JJ Pippin for 60-yards. They were helped along following a run of no gain by a 15-yard defensive personal foul penalty. They ended up getting moved back to their 40-yard line on a holding call, but two plays later they scored. The pass on the two-point conversion was no good and the Tigers led 6-0 with 9:14 left in the first quarter.
The Tigers defense forced a punt on the Cardinals’ next drive that was downed at the Timberlake 1-yard line. The long field for the Tigers proved to be trouble, when on the second play of their drive, they gave up a safety and two points. Timberlake still led 6-2 with 6:17 left in the first.
Following the safety, Medford returned it to their 47-yard line. Eight plays later the Cardinals scored on a 5-yard touchdown pass and catch. The two-point conversion was good and Medford led 10-6 with 2:21 left in the first quarter.
Following the ensuing kick-off, Timberlake started on their own 35-yard line. Six plays later the Tigers retook the lead right before the end of the first quarter. Pippin scored his second touchdown of the game on a 13-yard run. The two-point conversion attempt was no good and Timberlake led 12-10. The 65-yard drive took four plays and was helped along by a 15-yard face mask penalty against the Cardinals.
The second quarter was a back-and-forth contest for the first four possessions for both teams.
Medford started the quarter with a three play, 77-yard run that ended with a 65-yard touchdown pass. The two-point conversion was no good and Medford retook the lead 16-12 with 10:06 left in the second quarter.
Timberlake answered back following a kick-off and return to their 44-yard line. Pippin did the work with a run of 9 yards, 34 yards and a 13-yard touchdown run. Jenlink found Merric Judd on the two-point conversion to lead 20-16 with 8:54 left in the quarter.
Two minutes and 35 seconds later, Medford scored to retake the lead for the final time in the ball game. They put together a 65-yard drive that took five plays and ended on a 6-yard touchdown run. The two-point conversion was no good and Medford led 22-20 with 6:19 left in the quarter.
The Tigers had the answer again when Pippin ran in another touchdown, this time from the 10-yard line following a 6-yard run by Pippin and a 44-yard run by Jenlink. The drive took one minute and two seconds and stretched 60 yards. The two-point conversion from Judd to Dylan Schlup was good and Timberlake regained the 28-22 lead with 5:17 left in the quarter.
Medford put together a lengthy drive that took the clock down until eight seconds left in the second quarter when Judd intercepted the ball on the Timberlake 5-yard line.
Pippin ran a 15-yard run to end the second quarter, with Timberlake leading 28-22.
Following the halftime adjustment, Timberlake opened the second half with the ball on their 45-yard line.
The drive took eight plays and ended when Jenlink ran in a 1-yard touchdown run. The two-point conversion from Jenlink to Schlup was good and Timberlake increased their lead to 36-22 with 9:45 left in the third. The 55-yard drive utilized two pass plays and six run plays.
The Cardinals answered back with a three play drive that stretched 50 yards. Medford threw a 16-yard pass for the touchdown. The two-point conversion was no good and the Tiger lead was cut to 36-28 with 8:27 left in the quarter.
Timberlake again had the answer on a four play, 68-yard drive with Carter Sands scoring a touchdown on a 55-yard run. The two-point conversion was no good and the lead was increased to 42-28 with 7:19 left.
The Tiger defense held on a lengthy 10 play drive that took the ball all the way down to the Tiger 8-yard line. The pass on fourth down gained 7 of the 8 yards needed for a touchdown.
Timberlake got the ball back on their 1-yard line and it took one play for Pippin to go 99 yards for the touchdown. Jenlink added the two-point conversion and with 1:44 left in the third quarter, Timberlake led 50-28.
During Medford’s next drive the third quarter came to a close. Two plays into the fourth quarter Medford was forced to punt the ball. The short punt was returned to Medford’s 13-yard line. Following a run by Sands, Pippin scored on a 4-yard touchdown run. The pass for the two-point conversion from Jenlink to Judd was good and Timberlake led 58-28 with 11:26 left in the fourth.
Medford put together a drive and scored their final touchdown of the game with 8:22 left in the fourth. The score came on an 8-yard run. The two-point conversion was good and Timberlake led 58-36 with 8:22 left in the quarter.
Pippin scored the final touchdown of the game and his seventh of the night on an eight play, 77-yard drive. He ran in a 52-yard touchdown run and Dalton Leierer added the two-point conversion to give them the 66-36 lead with 4:27 left in the quarter. The drive used seven run plays and one pass play.
Medford failed to complete a first down and gave the ball back to Timberlake. The Tigers were able to run out the clock and gain their fourth district win and seventh overall.
The Tiger offense racked up 556 yards on 48 plays. They ran the ball 40 times for 455 yards and went 3-8 for 101 yards.
The offensive stats are as follows:
• Jenlink: 5-8 passing for 101 yards and one touchdown and five carries for 44 yards and one touchdown.
• Pippin: 25 carries for 316 yards and six touchdowns, two catches for 69 yards and one touchdown, one punt return for 11 yards and three kick returns for 12 yards.
• Sands: seven carries for 82 yards and one touchdown.
• Judd: three carries for 13 yards, two catches for 30 yards and two kick returns for 17 yards.
• Schlup: one catch for 2 yards.
Timberlake Head Football Coach Brian Severin said, “Our offense played well. We ran the ball better than we have been. I was pleased with the offense.”
The defense forced the one interception by Judd.
“We need to clean some things up. We were over pursuing, which will be addressed. The second half we played better. We need to be more fundamentally sound,” Severin said.
The Tigers will host Wesleyan Christian School at 7 p.m., Friday, Oct. 23. This will be the final regular season game for the Tigers.
Severin expects their opponent to have a similar type of offense as Medford.
His keys to victory are to have a strong run game, no turnovers and few penalties.
Wesleyan Christian comes into the game with a 3-4 district record with wins over Welch, DCLA and Copan. They lost to Medford 13-58.
Timberlake has two opponents left in the season on the road against Copan and Bluejacket.