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Eastside Catholic takes down Kennewick, books trip to WIAA 3A football semifinals: 3 takeaways

Crusaders' defense shows off in second half with five interceptions; David Lene, Ambrose Marsh with two each
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SEATTLE – It won't go down as the prettiest of wins for Eastside Catholic, but at this point in the season, nobody is exactly looking for style points.

The fourth-seeded Crusaders outlasted fifth-seeded Kennewick, 17-7, Saturday evening, overcoming multiple turnovers to return to the Class 3A semifinals.

Locked in a scoreless tie at halftime, Eastside Catholic got things going in the second half, scoring on its opening drive on a 10-yard touchdown run from David Lene out of the wildcat.

The Crusaders added to their lead with a field goal right before the third quarter ended, but Kennewick had an answer on a 20-yard touchdown pass from Dominic Driver to Kyler Witkowski shortly after.

That's all the Lions would get, though, as Eastside Catholic's defense smothered anything Kennewick tried to do the rest of the way.

Defensive back Ambrose Marsh hauled in two key second-half interceptions while linebacker David Lene picked off two passes in the third quarter.

Running back Jeremiah Burroughs scored on a 41-yard run late in the game for the Crusaders' other score. He also had Eastside Catholic's other interception in the game.

Here are three takeaways from the game:


Eastside Catholic coach Dominic Daste attributed the scoreless first half to one thing: turnovers.

Kennewick's defense got the ball back for its offense on two first-half interceptions. The Lions brought in another interception in the third quarter, but despite all that, the Crusaders only surrendered seven points the entire game.

"We talked about eliminating turnovers, penalties and stalling ourselves," Daste said. "Our defense played – again – really, really well. They've been fantastic all season."


With neither team able to break through on the scoreboard, each one was looking for a spark and the Crusaders got theirs from Lene on both sides of the ball.

Lene broke open the scoring on a 10-yard touchdown run out of the wildcat on the Crusaders' opening drive of the second half, but he wasn't done there as he picked off two passes in the quarter from his linebacker position to get Eastside Catholic's offense back on the field.

"David is by far and away one of the smartest kids I've ever coached," Daste said. "He can tell you what every single person does on defense and we put a lot on his lap in terms of offense. He's played a lot of football and when we've needed a play he's made it for us."


After falling short in the postseason the last two years, Eastside Catholic is on a self-proclaimed revenge tour.

The first stop was this quarterfinal win against Kennewick, who had beaten the Crusaders in the 2021 playoffs. Up next is Yelm, who took out Eastside Catholic in the state championship game a year ago on Kyler Ronquillo's touchdown heard around the country.

"It's definitely personal," Lene said. "That's what we've been calling it here at EC – the revenge tour. We're ready and we're coming."