Sheldon Irish make a statement with first playoff win

EUGENE, Ore -- The Sheldon Irish faced the David Douglas Scots in their first playoff game of the season. In what many, including Sheldon head coach Lane Johnson thought would be a “tough game,” the Irish came out on top, defeating the Scots, 42-6. 

Wide receiver Connor Strahm, a key player in last night’s game said, “I think we did pretty good, not to our full potential yet, but I think if we have a good week of practices next week, it’ll get better.”

After a quiet seven minutes starting off the first quarter, the Irish began to pile points onto the scoreboard, beginning with quarterback Taylor Alie’s touchdown pass to wide receiver Strahm. 

With 4:48 left in the first quarter, the Scots took control of the ball, only to be intercepted by defensive lineman Mike Ralston, who ran it in for another Irish touchdown, putting the score at 14-0. After that touchdown, however, the Irish were penalized for excessive celebration when Ralston spiked the ball in the end-zone. The Irish penalty was enforced on the kickoff.

In the next David Douglas’ possession, the Scots failed to act on the Irish penalty, with incomplete passes and a tackle for loss, made by defensive back Connor Strahm.

On the next Irish possession, quarterback Alie tossed a pass to running back Mitch Lewis, who was pushed out of bounds at the 25-yard line. Alie then drilled another swift pass into the arms of wide receiver Ivan Faulhaber, who put up another first down for the Irish.  Running back Mitch Lewis then carried the ball to just under the one-yard line, and ended the first quarter. 

At 1st and goal in the second quarter, quarterback Taylor Alie ran the ball in on a quarterback keeper, putting the Irish up 21-0.

The Scots failed to answer to Alie’s touchdown run, and punted, four plays after receiving the ball. 

Irish ball again, a pass to receiver Strahm, a carry from running back Yadie Dunmore, a pass to wide receiver Mitchel Herbert, and a pitch to Strahm helped to set up the next Irish touchdown. Quarterback Alie racked up six more points, with another quarterback keeper – with notable help from receiver Strahm, who blocked his defensive back opponent and then drilled the outside linebacker. Alie’s touchdown and the PAT made the score 28-0. 

Failing to react on yet another Irish touchdown, Scots’ quarterback Tim Patrick was intercepted by defensive back Dylan Lewis.

After running back Mitch Lewis and receiver Strahm’s back-to-back catches and carries for gains, quarterback Alie threw a quick touchdown pass to wide receiver Faulhaber, to put the Irish up 35-0 with 4:45 left in the half.

After another failed scoring attempt, the Scots punted the ball, and the Irish took over. During that set of downs, quarterback Alie passed the ball to receiver Strahm, who soon fumbled at the 32-yard line with 1:38 left in the first half. The David Douglas Scots recovered.

After the fumble, the Scots failed once again to bring in a touchdown when defensive linemen Liam Talty and Mike Ralston teamed up in a tackle for a loss of nine yards. The Scots punted just before the first half came to an end; and after a first down hand-off from quarterback Alie to running back Mitch Lewis, the score paused at 35-0.


When asked how well the Irish performed, running back Dunmore said, “The first half, we started off real average – as Coach would say – and we weren’t playing our game, but we seemed to come out in the second half, and get it done.”

Starting off the third quarter, wide receiver Dylan Lewis had a big return, putting the Irish at the 29-yard line. Quarterback Alie added yards on another quarterback keeper, and was stopped, after a first down, by Scots’ cornerback Taylor Trulson. A run play by running back Dunmore capped the Irish scoring at 42-0.

With 9:19 left in the third quarter, David Douglas failed to answer back to another Irish touchdown, and punted to receiver Strahm, who was knocked out of bounds at the 50-yard line.

Now Sheldon’s ball, quarterback Alie handed the ball off to running back Mitch Lewis, who was taken down after a gain of four yards. Quarterback Alie then passed the ball to receiver Faulhaber, who was stopped just shy of the first down marker. Alie passed the ball to receiver Faulhaber once more, securing the Irish first down with 7:28 left in the third quarter. After three carries by running back Mitch Lewis, quarterback Alie was sacked, bringing up fourth down. The Irish missed the field goal, keeping the score at 42-0. 

Failing to score again, the Scots punted the ball to receiver Strahm, who called a fair catch with 2:55 left in the third quarter.  After a carry by running back Ryan Fisher, running back Gaje McDaniel moved the ball forward, only to see it brought back to the 42-yard line, on a holding penalty. On 4th and 5, the Irish were intercepted by Scots’ defensive end Richard Nguyen. 

Once the Scots’ offense had taken the field, Irish defensive lineman Talty sacked Scots’ quarterback Tim Patrick at the Scots’ own 35-yard line. Scots’ quarterback Patrick was then intercepted by defensive back Yadie Dunmore. 

With a block in the back during the Dunmore interception, the Irish were brought back to their own 22-yard line. The Irish turned the ball over once again with another fumble. 

The last touchdown of the night – David Douglas’ only score – came after Irish linebacker Willy Spears’ sack. The Scots rushed the ball six yards, chalking up six points. The Scots’ PAT was blocked by the Irish. 

At the end of the night, the Irish had dominated, their hopes still alive for another appearance at the championship game. “As a team we played good, and we’re just looking forward to next week. We’ll see what happens,” said Dunmore.

The Sheldon Irish’s second playoff game will be on Friday, November 16, against the Roseburg Indians, at 7 PM in Eugene.