SPORTS: Port Angeles and Sequim football teams play for bragging rights; other prep football previews

By Lee Horton

Peninsula Daily News

They have combined for just one win and 13 losses.

They are currently at the bottom of the Olympic League football standings after one was the league champion last year and the other finished in fourth place.

Both those reasons aren’t enough to take away any of the meaning from tonight’s Port Angeles (0-5, 0-7) and Sequim (1-4, 1-6) game.

The two meet at Civic Field in Port Angeles at 7 p.m.

In fact, the struggles of the Wolves and Roughriders might actually give more meaning to the rivalry match-up.

“I’ve billed it as a bowl game,” Sequim coach Erik Wiker said last week after his team beat Klahowya for its first win of the season.

“Especially where we’re at [this season], what are kids going to brag about the most?

“When we’re both at the bottom, that is as big as when we’re both at the top.”

Coaches insist their teams not look past the next opponent, but it’s difficult to avoid thinking about when teams are trying to make the playoffs or win the league title.

But there isn’t much to look forward to this year.

If the last two weeks are any indication, Sequim is playing its best football of the season.

After scoring in double figures only once in its first five games, the Wolves’ offense scored 28 in a loss to Kingston and 37 in the victory over Klahowya.

Meanwhile, the Roughriders are coming off two rough whippings from the Olympic League’s top two teams, Bremerton and North Kitsap, and their offense has yet to score more than 14 points in a game.

But Port Angeles is desperate for a win, and victory would taste especially sweet at the expense of the Wolves, who have won four in a row over the Roughriders, dating back to 2007.

No league championship is on the line, but the tension and intensity should be the same as it always is when Sequim and Port Angeles meet.

“It’s going to be a league championship-type atmosphere,” Wiker said.

This one’s for bragging rights.

at Neah Bay

The Loggers take another swing at the Northwest Football League North’s elite against the defending state champion Red Devils.

Crescent (2-1, 6-1) didn’t land many punches in its 58-6 loss to Lummi two weeks ago, but they rebounded nicely to pound Tulalip Heritage last week.

Despite its defending champion status and soundly beating No. 5 Lummi, Neah Bay (3-0, 7-0) is stuck at No. 2 in The Associated Press 1B prep football poll.

Liberty Christian of Richland is entrenched at the No. 1 spot.

The Patriots notched a noteworthy win of their own when they beat No. 4 Almira Coulee-Hartline, that Neah Bay beat in the 1B title game last year, in the second week of the season.

Elma at Forks

Major implications in this one.

According to Forks coach Mark Feasel, the SWL-Evergreen Division will receive four playoff bids.

Hoquiam, Tenino and Montesano appear to have a firm grasp on the top three spots in the division.

Tied for fourth? Forks (2-2, 4-3) and Elma (2-2, 3-4).

And both have games against the aforementioned top three next week, so a playoff berth might just come down to which team wins tonight.

Fortunately for the Spartans, they are playing at home where they are undefeated this season.

Tacoma Baptist
at Port Townsend

Starting quarterback Jacob King is questionable for the Redskins homecoming tilt with the Crusaders (4-3).

Obviously, Port Townsend (3-2, 4-3) would love to have its best player and leader, but last week showed how many weapons the Redskins have.

Mitiku Little and Matt Cain can effectively run inside or out, Tim Russell relentlessly pounds the ball up the middle, Skyler Coppenrath and Layne Zack can make plays on both sides of the ball.

Evergreen Luth.
at Quilcene

If the Rangers win, they clinch the Northwest Football League South division title and a playoff spot.

If they lose, they will have to wait to see how Evergreen Lutheran (2-0, 2-4) does against Highland Christian next week.

Considering Highland Christian is winless and has only scored 42 points this season, Quilcene (3-0, 4-3) better take care of business this week against the Eagles.

Clallam Bay
at Tulalip Heritage

Both Bruins and Hawks (0-3, 3-3) are coming off brutal three-week stretches against the Northwest Football League North’s best teams, so they must see each other as a winnable game.

Health will be crucial to Clallam Bay (0-3, 2-4). The Bruins hope to get standout running back Matt Mohr back this week, but Austin Ritter and Jeremy Rock were also beat up during last week’s loss to Lummi.

at Vashon

After running the Nisqually League gauntlet for the last month, the Cowboys (1-2, 2-5) are probably happy to be facing the hapless Pirates (0-4, 1-6).

Postseason update

■ Chimacum’s loss to Charles Wright last week officially sets up a match-up with rival Port Townsend next week.

■ Port Angeles and Sequim are both looking for Week 10 games.

Initially, the teams that finish fifth to eighth in the Olympic League were hoping to have crossover match-ups with the fifth to eighth place South Puget Sound League’s 2A teams.

But that plan has fallen apart when the South Puget Sound League 2A teams decided to instead play the league’s 3A teams.

So, now the Wolves and Roughriders are searching for games to play the first weekend in November.

If they are able to find opponents, it might require some significant travel.

Last modified: October 18. 2012 5:42PM
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