High school football power rankings: Warriors, Tornadoes, Mountaineers make jumps

The T-Birds retain their top power ranking.

The T-Birds sit atop the Oly Sports preseason power rankings.

With an easy win over Shelton, Tumwater kept a grip on their top spot in the power rankings – at least for one week. Forget the intrigue of the Spaghetti Bowl, the real game this week is at South Sound Stadium. The T-Birds travel across town to play Timberline in what could be the biggest and best non-conference game of the season in the Olympia area.

The story of last week had to be the big wins that three new head coaches earned. Rochester, Yelm and Rainier all made moves in the offseason and took big leaps in the power rankings after convincing week one victories. Definitely impressive debuts, but can they keep their high spots in these completely unscientific power ranking that don’t necessarily say which team is best but which team is playing best in the Olympia area regardless of class.


1. Tumwater T-Birds (1-0)
Last week: #1 (No change)
Previous game: Tumwater 41, Shelton 0
Next game: @ Timberline (1-0) – South Sound Stadium – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: Tumwater came out and did exactly what was expected: they took it to Shelton running off 34 points in the first half and then took their foot off the gas pedal in the second. Christian Cummings was fantastic rushing for three easy touchdowns and Jayden Croft found Easton Trakel twice. But they’ll have a much stiffer test this week when they face Timberline at South Sound Stadium.

Timberline Blazers (1-0)
Last week: #2 (No change)
Previous game: Timberline 40, River Ridge 0
Next game: vs. Tumwater (1-0) – South Sound Stadium – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: The Blazers dominated River Ridge but didn’t quite run away with it until the fourth quarter when the game was long done. Gabe Gutierrez threw two touchdowns to Stevie Cleveland to put the game away early. This week they host Tumwater, a battle of the only two ranked area teams.

North Thurston Rams (1-0)
Last week: #3 (No change)
Previous game: North Thurston 41, Steilacoom 26
Next game: @ Black Hills (0-1) – Tumwater Stadium – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: They may not be blindingly fast like Tumwater and Timberline but the Rams are big and strong and used that to run right over Steilacoom this week. Hayden Maliska, Josh Ramirez and Josh Mosquera each scored twice behind a huge offensive line anchored by the giant Alex Rice, who is shockingly bigger than anybody else on the field. I don’t see how Black Hills will be able to stop them this week.

Olympia Bears (0-1)
Last week: #4 (No change)
Previous game: Lake Oswego 7, Olympia 6
Next game: vs. Capital (0-1) – Ingersoll Stadium – Friday, 7:30 PM

Notes: The Bears nearly upset the mighty Lake Oswego Lakers, one of Oregon’s top teams, giving up just one touchdown late in the game. Quite the improvement from last season when the Bears were knocked off easily, 34-0, at Ingersoll Stadium. Next up for Oly is the always intense Spaghetti Bowl.

Rochester Warriors (1-0)
Last week: #11 (+6)
Previous game: Rochester 34, Ridgefield 0
Next game: @ RA Long (1-0) – Longview Memorial Stadium – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: Eric Snelson’s debut as a head coach was a convincing win over 2A Ridgefield. Tyler Yarber rushed for 229 yards and a touchdown but it was the defense that really opened eyes forcing a safety, recovering a fumble and posting a shutout. They take on another 2A team this week when they travel to Longview to take on RA Long, who posted a 42-28 win over Battle Ground in week one.

Yelm Tornadoes (1-0)
Last week: #10 (+4)
Previous game: Yelm 48, Highline 0
Next game: @ Olympic (0-1) – Silverdale Stadium – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: A convincing win against an opponent going through some hard times. That’s what Jason Ronquillo got in his first game as the Yelm head coach. But they will have a tougher opponent on Friday when they take on Olympic in Silverdale. Last season the two teams played a close barn burner with the Tornadoes coming out on top 49-48.

Rainier Mountaineers (1-0)
Last week: #12 (+5)
Previous game: Rainier 46, Naselle 7
Next game: vs. Mossyrock (0-1) – Rainier HS – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: Well look at Rainier. Last season they scored just 67 points all season. On Friday, under new head coach Terry Shaw, they put 46 points on Naselle. Now granted, it’s a 2B team, but those same Comets beat the Mountaineers 39-6 last year. What a turnaround. Next up, Mossyrock, who beat them 42-12 last year. Can they get the same production out of McCoy Bichler, who rushed for 192 yards and four touchdowns this week?

Capital Cougars (0-1)
Last week: #5 (-3)
Previous game: Newport 35, Capital 7
Next game: @ Olympia (0-1) – Ingersoll Stadium – Friday, 7:30 PM

Notes: Not sure what to take from Capital’s 35-7 loss to Newport on Friday night. Newport is an improved, good 4A team while Capital is a young 2A squad. This week the Cougars get another improved 4A team in Olympia. The Cougars will have to grow up quick to get the big rivalry win.

Black Hills Wolves (0-1)
Last week: #6 (-3)
Previous game: Clover Park 42, Black Hills 35
Next game: vs. North Thurston (1-0) – Tumwater Stadium – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: The Wolves played a pretty good Clover Park team tough, taking them down to the wire. Jayden Troy threw four touchdowns, two to Nick Knittle, in the win. They have an even tougher test ahead of them with North Thurston coming into Tumwater Stadium on Friday night.

Tenino Beavers (0-1)
Last week: #9 (-1)
Previous game: Raymond 27, Tenino 21
Next game: @ Washougal (1-0) – Fishback Stadium, Washougal – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: Not sure what to take away from Tenino’s loss to Raymond. The Gulls went to the 2B playoffs last season and played a better Tenino team tough in the opener a year ago. They go from a 2B opponent to a 2A opponent when they take on Washougal this week. The Panthers knocked off Hudson’s Bay 35-0 in week one.

River Ridge Hawks (0-1)
Last week: #7 (-4)
Previous game: Timberline 40, River Ridge 0
Next game: @ Sequim (0-1) – Sequim HS – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: The Hawks at least kept it relatively close until the fourth quarter when Timberline took at 20 point lead and doubled it. Not much to take from a shutout loss to a really good team in week one and we’ll see what they can do against a Sequim team that lost to British Columbia’s New Westminster in week one.

Shelton Highclimbers (0-1)
Last week: #8 (-4)
Previous game: Tumwater 41, Shelton 0
Next game: vs. North Mason (1-0) – Highclimber Stadium – Friday, 7:00 PM

Notes: They played the #2 team in the state that was ready for some revenge in front of a packed house in Tumwater. Predictably, nothing went right. They managed just 69 yards worth of offense all night and only threatened to score when Tumwater made mental mistakes with a couple of silly penalties. With their undersized line and lack of experience on both sides of the ball, it might be a very long season for the Highclimbers and their broadcast crew.

Posted on September 10, 2013, in Black Hills HS, Capital HS, High school, North Thurston HS, Olympia HS, Rainier HS, River Ridge HS, Rochester HS, Shelton HS, Tenino HS, Timberline HS, Tumwater HS, Yelm HS. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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