The Shelton football team couldn’t overcome five turnovers and lost their season finale to Wilson 16 to 14 in a back and forth game at Stadium Bowl in Tacoma that was won on a last second field goal.
The Rams started the game with a short field, on the Highclimbers’ 40, but the Shelton defense held Wilson to a 30-yard field goal by Alek Greenleaf.
The ‘Climbers first possession ended in a Cody Bragg punt that pinned the Rams on their 10 yardline.
The teams traded punts before Wilson went from their 23 to the Shelton 25 but the ‘Climbers’ “D” force the Rams to try a 42-yard field goal that came up short.
Shelton then went 80 yards on nine plays and took their first lead on a three-yard Willy Ruiz touchdown run.
The Highclimbers’ Kyle Kimball stopped Wilson’s next drive by intercepting a pass from Evan Medeiros.
Unfortunately, Shelton went three-and-out on their possession but the half ran out on the Rams and the teams went to the locker room with the Highclimbers up 7 to 3.
The third quarter didn’t start well for Shelton. The ‘Climbers lost a fumble on their first offensive play which led to Wilson taking back the lead on a Medeiros two-yard TD run making the score 10 to 7.
Shelton’s Tyler Giraldes was picked off to end the ‘Climbers’ next drive after three plays but Shelton’s defense stepped up and forced the Rams to punt.
Wilson intercepted Giraldes for a second time on a deep pass but it was the Highclimber defense again that stopped the Rams as Shelton’s Nick Wuestner grabbed a Medieros pass out of the air.
The Highclimbers didn’t have the ball long as they lost a fumble on the following play and Wilson’s Greenleaf kicked a 41-yard field goal giving the Rams a 13 to 7 lead.
Shelton then put together a long drive that started on the 24 but ended on the Wilson 12 with another interception.
The ‘Climber defense stopped the Rams again but the Shelton offense went three-and-out giving Wilson another short field. However, that Rams drive ended with Kimball stripping the ball from a Wilson runner inside the Shelton 25 and Taylor Toney scooping it up and returning it to the 40.
That Rams turnover set up a 60-yard seven-play drive that gave the Highclimbers a one-point lead when Giraldes connected with Toney on a 14-yard TD pass.
With the score Shelton 14, Wilson 13 with just over two minutes to go, the Rams went from their 19 to the Highclimbers’ 20 with a first down. With 53 seconds left, a broken play led to a four-yard loss for Wilson with the clock running. The Rams managed to get a play off with 15 seconds on the clock. Wilson’s Sean Domek ran left toward the sidelines. As he got to the outside and turned up field, a Highclimber grabbed his face mask pulling him down inside the 20. That penalty put the ball on the Shelton nine yard line with seven seconds to go. The Rams’ Greenleaf then kicked the winning field goal.
For Shelton, Tyler Giraldes completed 12 of 25 passes for 152 yards and a touchdown. Willy Ruiz rushed 21 times for 86 yards and a touchdown. Taylor Toney was the leading receiver with five catches including the 14-yard TD pass from Giraldes.
The Highclimbers finish the season with a 3-and-7 record.
The North Mason football team ended its season with an 8 to 6 win over Tenino. The Bulldogs came from behind to beat the Beavers scoring late in the game. The boys from Belfair finish the season 2-and-7.