Lynden knows Scooter Hastings’ size gives the Lions opportunities against any opponent. But against Sedro-Woolley on Saturday, Dec. 6, at the Tacoma Dome, Hastings’ 6-foot-7 frame became even more apparent.
The Cubs largely defended the big wide receiver with Anthony Cann, who is only 5-foot-9 — a 10-inch difference between receiver and defensive back.
“He’s a little bit shorter than me. Just a little bit,” Hastings said with a smirk. “We tried to capitalize on that, and we did, but the ball didn’t roll our way.”
Hastings ended the game with seven catches for 78 yards and was most present in Lynden’s drive to end the second quarter. He caught four of his passes on that drive, good for 38 yards.
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All four of his catches on the drive were 7- to 13-yard routes along the sideline, as the big man used his size to block out Sedro-Woolley defenders. But the drive ended with an interception in the red zone.
“He’s 6-7,” said Lynden receiver Jonathan Whetnall, who caught six passes for 113 yards in the game. “When you got a little guy out there, it’s easy to throw it up to him.”
It wasn’t the only time Lynden capitalized on Sedro-Woolley’s small defensive backs. In the first meeting between the two teams — a 33-30 Lynden win on Oct. 24 — Hastings caught six passes for 111 yards and three touchdowns.
Because of Hastings size and ability, quarterback Sterling Somers knows the big guy will be missed next season.
“Scooter’s a mismatch for anyone,” Somers said. “He’s an amazing athlete. I’m going to miss him next year.”
Hastings not only was a factor in catching passes, he also added himself into the mix throwing the ball.
In the second quarter, Hastings, starting at the numbers, broke inside after the snap. As he got the ball handed off to him from Somers for an apparent wide receiver sweep, Hastings stopped, set himself and looked up field.
Waiting for him down the sideline was an open Whetnall. The pass was golden, and Whetnall caught it for a 56-yard touchdown to make the game 7-6.
“I just hope I catch it,” Whetnall said of what he was thinking when he saw the ball coming his way. “It’s pretty scary at that moment.”
The trick play is something the Lions have been working on all season. The last time it worked was against Sehome in the Lions’ 35-17 win on Oct. 3. Only last time, it was backup quarterback Clark Hazlett doing the throwing.
“We’ve been working on that all year,” Hastings said. “We pulled it off early in the season, and we’ve tried it a few times, but it never really worked out. It worked out tonight.”
While Whetnall, who is also a senior, picked up nearly half his yards on that one play, he also played a large role in the Lynden offense Saturday.
“They were keying in on Jordan (Wittenberg), so I just tried to open the game up and do what I could,” Whetnall said. “It got to the point where there’s not much we could do at the end. I just tried to do my best and leave it all on the field.”
Wittenberg finished with four catches for 56 yards.