High School Football

Nooksack or Meridian? Playoff spot still up for grabs on final day of regular season

Nooksack Valley’s CaseyBauman, right, reaches for Meridian’s Tony Schleimer as he runs down the sideline for a large gain Friday, Oct. 21.
Nooksack Valley’s CaseyBauman, right, reaches for Meridian’s Tony Schleimer as he runs down the sideline for a large gain Friday, Oct. 21. For The Bellingham Herald

Lynden at Sehome

Time: 7 p.m.

Site: Civic Stadium

Lions (7-1, 6-0 2A NWC) update: No. 6 Lynden scored the game’s final 14 points to lock up the 2A NWC title with a 31-17 win over Burlington-Edison last week. Quarterback Jacob Hommes rushed for 176 yards and three TDs and is closing in on 1,000 yards this season (916). He’s already passed for 1,128 yards and 14 TDs. Rylan Severson caught one TD from Hommes last week and recorded a team-high 83 yards in the game. Lynden’s defense also turned in another strong effort, limiting Burlington to 200 yards of total offense.

Mariners (0-8, 0-6) update: Sehome suffered its 15th-straight loss with a 48-0 setback at Blaine last week. The Mariners were outgained more than 10 to 1 in a game they managed just 30 yards of offense (11 rushing and 19 passing). Marcus Montag leads the team in rushing yardage (420) and receiving (381) this season – nearly half Sehome’s total of 1,667 this year. Last week’s shutout was the second time Sehome was held scoreless and the fifth time the Mariners have failed to reach double digits this year.

Key to the game: Lynden already has its top seed to the 2A Northwest District playoffs wrapped up, so staying healthy and maintaining momentum into the postseason are the biggest things for the Lions as they try to get back to state after a one-year absence.

Player to watch: Sophomore James Marsh was supposed to split time with Hommes at quarterback this season for Lynden, but an early-season injury limited his action. He may see some extra playing time this week.

Herald pick: Lynden 48-6

Mount Baker at Meridian

Time: 7 p.m.

Site: Meridian High School

Mountaineers (8-0, 5-0 1A NWC) update: No. 2 Mount Baker wrapped up its fifth consecutive 1A NWC title with a 41-12 victory over Lynden Christian last week. For the fourth week in a row and the fifth time this season, Jed Schleimer and Carson Engholm both surpassed 100 rushing yards. Schleimer (149 yards, 3 TDs last week) leads Whatcom County with 1,297 yards this season, while Engholm (126 yards, 2 TDs) is fourth with 1,075. Mount Baker’s defense continues to be stout against the run, limiting opponents to 3.0 yards per carry.

Trojans (4-4, 3-2) update: Meridian secured at least a tie for the No. 2 seed out of the 1A NWC with a 47-20 win over Nooksack Valley last week. A win or a Nooksack Valley loss Friday would keep the Trojans’ 17-year streak of reaching the postseason alive and help them avoid a Kansas tiebreaker on Tuesday, Nov. 1. Tony Schleimer had his second 100-yard game of the season (118 yards, 1 TD) last week. He also threw for a TD and caught one. Simon Burkett threw for 204 yards and two TDs.

Key to the game: With the top seed to the 1A Northwest District playoffs already wrapped up, Mount Baker doesn’t have a lot riding on this game, while Meridian certainly does. The Trojans will need to find a way to slow Jed Schleimer and Engholm, who combined for 308 yards and four TDs in 41-28 victory in the first meeting Oct. 7.

Player to watch: Cole Roberts had a nice game for Meridian last week, rushing for 99 yards and two TDs on 17 carries. He also ran for a two-point conversion.

Herald pick: Mount Baker 31-28

Lynden Christian at Nooksack Valley

Time: 7 p.m.

Site: Nooksack Valley High School

Lyncs (1-7, 0-5 1A NWC) update: Lynden Christian dropped its fifth in a row with a 41-12 loss to Mount Baker last week. Jordan Riddle rushed for 97 yards on 21 carries and has become the Lyncs’ top rushing threat since David Bladies’ injury. Colby Flint threw for two TDs in the game – one each to Tyson Cline and Michael Lancaster. Kalai Jandoc had a team-high 41 receiving yards. The Lyncs have lost their three 1A NWC games not against Mount Baker by a combined 10 points.

Pioneers (4-4, 2-3) update: Nooksack Valley’s postseason hopes took a hit with a 47-20 loss to Meridian last week. Now the best the Pioneers can hope for is to force a tiebreaker Tuesday, Nov. 1, by beating Lynden Christian and having Meridian lose against Mount Baker. Whatcom County passing leader Casey Bauman surpassed 300 yards for the fourth time this year. Tre Silva was his leading receiver with 100 yards and one TD, while Michael O’Bryan was his top target with seven catches for 87 yards and a TD.

Key to the game: The Pioneers have got to find a way to shore up a run defense that has allowed 255.3 yards per game this season and 7.3 yards per attempt. Even if they make it to the postseason, it won’t be a long run with numbers like that. LC had 206 in a 35-32 loss in the first meeting Oct. 7.

Player to watch: Nooksack senior Kyle Veldman leads the Pioneers with 544 receiving yards this year, but it’s at linebacker where they really need him to step up.

Herald pick: Nooksack Valley 28-24

Marysville-Getchell at Ferndale

Time: 7 p.m.

Site: Ferndale High School

Chargers (1-7, 0-5 3A Wesco North) update: Marysville-Getchell suffered its seventh consecutive loss 60-13 to Curtis in a nonleague game last week. The Chargers fell in a 40-6 hole by halftime. Ethan Watts led the team in receiving, caught a TD pass and recovered a fumble on defense. Caleb Koellmer passed for a TD and ran for another. Warren Williams, Declan Sweatt and Garrett Allan each had a sack.

Golden Eagles (7-1, 4-1) update: No. 7 Ferndale’s second-half comeback simply ran out of time in a 47-42 loss to Squalicum in last week’s battle of unbeatens. Ben Broselle had a giant game for the Golden Eagles, rushing for 132 yards and a TD on nine carries and catching four passes for 137 yards and two touchdowns. Justice Powell wasn’t far behind with 105 rushing yards on eight carries and four catches for 78 yards and two TDs. Ferndale lost two costly fumbles.

Key to the game: Ferndale has already locked up the Wesco’s No. 4 seed into the 3A quad-district playoffs, so the most important thing for them is to re-establish some positive momentum and stay healthy.

Player to watch: Ferndale hasn’t been known to throw a lot in recent years, but quarterback James Hinson had a career day, hitting 15 of 21 pass attempts for 252 yards and four touchdowns against Squalicum.

Herald pick: Ferndale 49-0