By Lee Horton
Peninsula Daily News
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North Kitsap kicker Kyler Gracey broke the tie with a 34-yard field goal on the first play of the final quarter that put the Vikings ahead 20-17.
Running back Kyle North extended the lead to 27-17 with just under nine minutes remaining when he scored from 22 yards out.
The Wolves were unable to answer while still within striking distance, and North Kitsap put the game out of reach with two more touchdowns.
“I know that again we faltered and didn’t execute like we could,” Sequim coach Erik Wiker said.
“And then good teams take advantage of those type of things.”
For the first three quarters, the game lived up to its billing as a matchup between two of the Olympic League’s best teams.
Sequim scored first by going 80 yards on the game’s opening drive, the final touch being a 25-yard touchdown pass from Jack Wiker to Christian Miles.
The Vikings responded on their first drive when A.J. Milyard hooked up with Mitch Adams for a 7-yard score.
Gracey’s go-ahead field goal in the fourth quarter was his second of the game.
He also boomed a 42-yarder in the second quarter with enough accuracy and distance that it probably would have been good from 10 to 15 yards farther back.
Wiker said the strong-legged kicker is a nice weapon for North Kitsap.
“It changes [the game],” Wiker said.
“I mean, you’re playing from behind because they kick a field goal because we stuffed them on defense. You know, they didn’t go anywhere, but they [make a field goal].
“And that’s a big difference because then you are playing from behind instead of [being] tied still, and it changes the way you do things when you start running out of time.”
The Wolves regained the lead when running back Lopaka Yasamura’s 1-yard run made it 14-10.
But again, North Kitsap (2-0, 2-2) quickly answered, scoring a touchdown on its next drive.
On the last play of the first half, Sequim kicker Mitch Koonz showed off his leg with a 34-yard field goal that evened the score at 17.
The biggest play of the third quarter was an interception at the goal line by Miles after the Vikings drove from their own 14 yard line to the Sequim five.
Overall, Wiker liked the way his defense performed against North Kitsap’s talented offense.
“The defense stepped up a ton; tons of three-and-outs,” Wiker said.
“How many times did they get inside the 30, 25, and not score or go backwards?”
“They’ve got some good play-makers on that team; their good athletes are pretty good.
“[Milyard] is real good. I mean he was getting hit, and turning around while he was getting hit and throwing the ball.
“And a couple of times it was fourth down, almost should have been a sack or a throw to the dirt, and he completes it while he’s getting hit.
“He made some real big plays.”
Sequim now sits at 0-4 on the season, and 0-2 in the Olympic League.
Despite the lopsided loss and winless record, Wiker likes the effort of the Wolves, who are missing a handful of key players due to injury.
“Really super proud of the team. They played together as a team,” he said.
“It is frustrating to go 0-4, and have the kids try so hard, I think on any team.
“When I first got here we were 0-9, I had more pride for all those kids that were trying in game eight and they hadn’t won a game, than I had almost any team that I’ve coached since.
“It’s harder to do that than it is to be ahead. It’s easy to be a frontrunner when you’re ahead in the game, or ahead with great records and stuff like that.
“These guys are digging deep and doing that.”
Sequim travels to Silverdale Stadium to face Olympic (1-1, 1-3) next Friday.
North Kitsap 40, Sequim 17
North Kitsap 7 10 0 23— 40
Sequim 7 10 0 0— 17
SEQ—Christian Miles 25 pass from Jack Wiker (Mitch Koonz kick)
NK—Mitch Adams 7 pass from A.J. Milyard (Kyler Gracey kick)
NK—Gracey 42 FG
SEQ—Lopaka Yasamura 1 run (Koonz kick)
NK—J.T. Nettleton 37 pass from Milyard (Gracey kick)
SEQ—Koonz 34 FG
NK—Gracey 34 FG
NK—Kyle North 22 run (Gracey kick)
NK—26 INT return (Gracey kick)
NK—T.J. Jensen 16 run (kick failed)
Rushing— SEQ: Wiker 24-134, Yasamura 5-16, Brady Vig 2-6.
Passing—SEQ: Wiker 15-36-3, 139; Nick Faunce 0-1.
Receiving—SEQ: Josiah Anastasi 8-53, Miles 4-54.