Officials had a unique impact on title games

The teams that were penalized more won almost all the title games - again
Dec. 11, 2012 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal
The officiating crew at the Class 6A title game discusses a call.
Photo by Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal

Everyone's favorite punching bag during a team sport - officials - got plenty of action during the championship season this fall, as they do for any event.

And, they had an effect on the six championship football games, although not what you might expect.

Five of the six games were won by the team that had either more penalties or more penalty yards, including Oakland, which got pummeled for 16 penalties and 119 yards but still beat Portland Christian 50-27 in the Class 2A final.

Lake Oswego lost the 6A final, but had just one - yes one - penalty for five yards.

so, what to make of that?

Fans of the Portland Timbers are continually impressed and incredibly loyal to midfielder Diego Charra, who led the MLS in fouls last year and challenged for the title this year, too - a sign fans promote as his heart showing through to his play.

That work for high school football, too?

Coaches in every sport and at every level want their athletes to lose just a little bit of discipline for a moment of passion, as long as it doesn't affect the outcome of a game. And, this year, you could argue that's what happened.

Here's the numbers:

6A: Sheldon 13, Lake Oswego 6

Sheldon 5 penalties for 43 yards, Lake Oswego 1-5

5A: Sherwood 46, Marist 20

Sherwood 3-20, Marist 3-12

4A: Baker 52, North Bend 22

Baker 11-71, Norh Bend 8-54

3A: Dayton 34, Cascade Christian 28

Cascade Christian 9-87, Dayton 7-55

2A: Oakland 50, Portland Christian 27

Oakland 16-119, Portland Christian 9-41

1A: Camas Valley 24, St. Paul 8

Camas Valley 7-46, St. Paul 5-30


So, here's the real entertaining thing - it happened that way last year, too. In only one of the games did the team that lost have more penalties, or more penalty yardage than the team that won. The only significant difference in the teams was Class 4A, where Siuslaw had a measurable difference and lost by just five points.

Here's the numbers:

6A: Lake Oswego 47, Sheldon 14

Lake Oswego 7-54 yards, Sheldon 4-47

5A: Mountain View 14, Sherwood 13

Mountain View 8-74, Sherwood 2-15

4A: LaSalle 45, Siuslaw 40

Siuslaw 15-113, LaSalle 7-57

3A: Santiam Christian 31, Dayton 28

Santiam Christian 4-31, Dayton 3-26

2A: Gold Beach 30, Scio 0

Scio 7-66, Gold Beach 7-58

1A: Camas Valley 66, Perrydale 22

Camas Valley 6-44, Perrydale 31


Without a lot of penalties the game went quickly, too. The Class 6A final, played Dec. 8, lasted just two hours, 19 minutes, and was held up far more for television timeouts than replaying downs due to penalties.

One penalty for five yards - that's the kind of discipline a coach wants to see at the end of a long season, although ...