By News-Register staff • 

That winning feeling

As the clock struck zero, McMinnville High School students and football players alike converged in an impromptu mosh pit on the Wortman Stadium field.

The Grizzlies had taken a knee to cement a 41-26 win against McKay, their first of the 2014 season and their first win as a member of the Class 6A Greater Valley Conference.

Never mind that McMinnville (1-6, 1-6 GVC) knocked the Royal Scots back to 2-5 overall (1-5 GVC). Never mind that the Grizzlies turned the ball over four times, including a third-quarter fumble on the McKay 5-yard line. Never mind that the night was cold and wet, rainfall vacillating between steady and torrential.

The emotion was real, and the passion was palpable. The students earned the right to jump around.

"I personally think we're the happiest 1-6 team in the state," junior wide receiver/safety Jesse Medley said. "We have a great time. Everyone on the team is fantastic. Everyone loves each other. It's a brotherhood."

Tanner Scanlon changed the game's complexion at the beginning of the fourth quarter. The senior jumped a screen pass from McKay quarterback Matthew Ritchie to set up a Mac first down at the Royal Scots' 13-yard line. On the first play from scrimmage, Grizzlies quarterback Wyatt Smith found Scanlon on a fade route for a touchdown, putting McMinnville up 34-26 and keeping momentum with the home team.

It was Scanlon's third touchdown of the night, as he ran the ball in from 6 and 4 yards out in the first quarter to give Mac an early 13-7 advantage. 

Smith threw for three touchdowns on the evening, hitting Colton Heidt for touchdown catches of 11 and 60 yards. Zach Silver scored on a two-yard touchdown run with 27 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter to bring about the final margin.

"We outdid their defense," Medley said. "We were just one step ahead of them."

McKay's Kris Williams caught touchdown passes of 4 and 38 yards for the Royal Scots, and Matthew Jarding recorded a pair of rushing touchdowns.

McMinnville hosts Class 5A Parkrose on Oct. 24 for a 7 p.m. game at Wortman Stadium. It is the only nonleague contest the Grizzlies will play in the regular season.

In other action:

Santiam Christian 18, Amity 0

AMITY -- What do you get when you pit a team missing three of its top offensive players and fielding a sophomore quarterback making his first varsity start, in the rain, against the No. 1 team in its class? Normally, the answer is: a recipe for disaster.

Consider the disaster averted. 

Though Amity did lose their Class 3A West Valley League tilt with top-ranked Santiam Christian, 18-0, on Friday night, the Warriors put on an impressive performance considering the odds stacked up against them.

"No Isaac Nance tonight, no Lance (Nelson), and no D.J. (Trunde). Three starting guys on the offense, that’s about 95 percent of our offense. That hurts," head coach Justin Amaya said. "We kind of joked around on the sideline that their front five probably outweighed 11 of our guys on the field at any one time. They were a big team. That hurt us, but the boys played hard."

The Warriors replacement under center, Clint Hatch, turned in what Amaya described as an excellent performance given the circumstances. 

"Clint Hatch did a great job coming in, mistake-free pretty much," Amaya said. "He might have thrown a pick, but he did a hell of a job playing quarterback."

"He’s a sophomore, he did great. We can’t ask any more out of a sophomore," senior tight end T.R. McShane said. "He gave us everything we asked for."

Amity (4-3, 2-2 WVL) will close out their season on a two-game road trip, heading to Willamina next Friday for a 7 p.m. tilt, then on to Dayton on Halloween night. 

Horizon Christian 50, Sheridan 14

TUALATIN -- The Spartans dropped their fourth consecutive contest against the Hawks in Friday's Class 3A West Valley League game.

Sheridan (2-4, 0-4 WVL) hosts Santiam Christian on Oct. 24 at 7 p.m.

Taft 46, Willamina 0

WILLAMINA --The Bulldogs suffered their third shutout of the season at the hands of the Tigers in Friday night's Class 3A West Valley League game at Glen Larkin Field.

Willamina (1-6, 0-4 WVL) hosts Amity on Oct. 24 at 7 p.m.

Philomath 59, Yamhill-Carlton 18

PHILOMATH -- The Tigers remain on the hunt for their first Class 4A Oregon West Conference win on the season after losing to the Warriors Friday night.

Yamhill-Carlton (1-6, 0-4 OWC) hosts Newport on Oct. 24 at 7 p.m.