With that in mind, the four coaches kept everything close to the vest, executing the attack as vanilla as possible.
“I didn’t show any action game stuff,” Samples said. “I just wanted us to work with our mesh, with our turn.”
But for Comets and Cardinals, even it was good to see stars coming back from injuries.
Naselle’s Kolten Lindstrom only played half in his first college game this winter, before a nasty ankle injury ended his season. On Saturday, he had 36 yards and one touchdown in four carries, adding 22 receiving yards on a pair of catches and looking like he was back at full speed doing it.
“I’m sure deep down he was still wondering how that ankle is doing,” Naselle first-year coach Kevin McNulty said. “He got it through training, and maybe every now and then has a scare with scar tissue.” But to get out of here, he’s an intense kid.
On Winlock’s side, the story was the return of Nolan Swofford after a late-season injury. The beefy tailback ran over Northwest Christian for 81 yards and three touchdowns in five carries, then crushed 12 more yards against the Comets.
“He’s running pretty hard,” Samples said. “My main goal for him is to run north and south, put his foot in the ground when he needs it.”