Cruisers manhandle Cascade Christian
Eatonville's offensive line manhandled the Cascade Christian defense and opened running lanes all night for running back Dylan Norman on the way to a 35-7 win over the Cougars Thursday night.
Norman ran wild over the Cougars, rushing for a career- and season-high 240 yards and three touchdowns.
Norman's 240 yards rushing on the night is the most by any Cruiser since Caden Jumper rushed for 258 yards against River Ridge in 2019.
"I have to say it really comes down to my offensive line and how well they did for me,” Norman said about his success after the game. “As a running back, I can only do so much on my own. So, all the credit goes to them.”
Norman said he will be treating that offensive line to some donuts.
"I also have to buy them donuts now because I went over 100 yards,” he said. “Every time I rush for over 100 yards, I get them donuts.”
Eatonville started the scoring early in the game on their first possession. After a significant kick return by Ky Nation, which set the Cruisers up at their 41-yard line, on the second play from scrimmage, Norman took an option pitch from quarterback Job Kralik and raced his way 54 yards untouched for the score to give the Cruisers an early 7-0 lead.
Eatonville struck again midway through the second quarter when Kralik connected with Walker Bruun on a 17-yard pass down the middle for the touchdown to make it 14-0.
Norman picked up his second touchdown on the evening in the second quarter with a 2-yard scamper that increased the Cruiser lead to 21-0.
With under a minute to go, the Cruisers finished off the first half scoring when Norman found the endzone for his third and final score of the night when he plunged in from 1-yard out to send the teams into halftime with the Cruisers up 28-0.
Eatonville's final score of the night came with about 3 minutes left in the third quarter and was set up when Nation picked off a pass by Cougar quarterback Cade Sando at the Cougar 3-yard line.
The Cruisers strung together a 19-play, 97-yard drive that ended with Kralik keeping the ball and running up the left side of the line for the score to put the Cruisers up 35-0.
Cascade Christian found the endzone at the start of the fourth quarter when Sando connected with Kai Mingming for the 19-yard touchdown to make it 35-7.
Defensively, Eatonville held the Cougars to season lows in passing and rushing. After Cascade Christian averaged 349 yards passing in its first two games, the Cruisers held the Cougars to only 126 yards through the air while intercepting Sando twice on the night.
"The quarterback and receivers for CCHS are very capable and will have a lot of success this season,” Cruiser defensive coordinator Rex Norris said. “We knew that and made it a focus this past week in practice. The kids made sure they communicated in the secondary, and it helped limit the Cougars’ success."
Eatonville held the Cougars to only 86 yards on the ground, much lower than their 170-yard average on the season.
"We were able to slow their ground game with strong defensive line play and team pursuit,” Norris said. “We still have a lot to work on, but we are pleased with the progress of the defense."
With that win, the Cruisers improve to 3-0 on the season and will prepare for their next opponent, the Bellevue Christian Vikings (2-1), who they will host at 7 p.m. Friday at B.W. Lyon Stadium.
During halftime of that game, Eatonville High School will induct four Cruiser alumni into the Eatonville High School Athletic Hall of Fame.