Vikings crush Burns in playoff contest

Vale's defense stymied the Hilander offense for most of the second-round playoff game Saturday in Burns. (The Enterprise/Les Zaitz).

BURNS – The Viking football machine is hitting on all cylinders.

A week after smashing Sutherlin 49-7, Vale put together another near-flawless performance to beat Burns 36-14 Saturday. The win sets the stage for a semifinal match up against No. 1-ranked and unbeaten Rainier Saturday in Hermiston. The Vale-Rainier game is set for 5 p.m. Mountain Time at Hermiston High School.

The Vale win over Burns was especially poignant for the Vikings. That’s because three weeks ago the Hilanders handed the Vikings a 26-6 loss to claim the Eastern Oregon League championship.

Yet it was that loss, said Coach Jeff Aldred, that helped redefine the Vikings season. After . . .