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LOPEZ — The six-hour bus/ferry ride did its share of the damage to a Crescent Logger football team on a rain-drenched Saturday, and then a fired-up Lopez Lobo team did the rest as the Loggers were eliminated from the 1B playoffs with a 34-14 loss.
Coming out flat against the Lobos — whether from the long trip or perhaps still feeling some of the hangover from a Neah Bay thrashing one week prior — the Loggers found themselves down quickly 8-0.
“This was a tough pill to swallow,” Crescent coach Darrell Yount said.
“For whatever reason, we came out flat, didn’t get any push up front on offense or defense.
“And yet, still kind of hung around as we were able to get some huge hits and some key stops to keep the score very manageable.”
The Lobos led early on the legs of an effective outside running game.
Trailing 14-0 with three minutes to go in the first half, Crescent finally got its offense into gear with a long drive but stalled on the Lopez 20 with only 10 seconds remaining in the half.
And that’s when the game took a huge turn as the Lobos scored on an back-breaking 80-yard run with seconds on the clock.
That gave the Lobos a 22-0 halftime advantage.
The third quarter was a defensive slugfest with neither offense able to finish drives resulting in a 0-0 standoff.
The Lobos would strike first again in the fourth quarter, taking a 28-0 lead.
With Crescent quarterback Beau Bamer out of the game because of a shoulder injury, Mike Zapien took the controls, and running out of the pistol, found Derrick Findley on his first play on a 31-yard sideline route for the Loggers’ first visit to paydirt.
Zapien zipped a bullet to Findley for the successful conversion and it was 28-8.
The Lobos went ahead 34-8 with only 3:45 on the clock.
Crescent wasn’t quite done, though, as Eric Larson had other things on his mind, taking the ensuing kickoff 80 yards to the Lobo 10-yard line.
Zapien would bang it in from there, two plays later, on a bullying run for what would be the final points at 34-14.
“Miscues on offense, and the inability to finish drives kind of did us in, it turns out,” Yount said.
“When we’re playing well and clicking on offense, we can make a comeback and put points on the board quickly.
“But on the greasy, muddy field with a wet football, and a game Lobos team, it just proved to be too much on this day.
“Hey, I’m proud of our kids’ efforts.”
Leading the team with 12 tackles each were Zapien and Larson while Bamer had 11.
With the loss, Crescent falls to 6-3 and is eliminated from postseason play.
The Loggers will conclude the season with a crossover North Football League North vs. South game Saturday.
Crescent probably will host a South Division team yet to be determined.
“We’ll re-group and give it one more good effort to try to close out the season at 7-3,” Yount said.
“We’ve had too good a season to have it all end now, but to be honest, in a playoff format that sends you eventually against the powers of the league — Lummi or Neah Bay — the scenario is very predictable.”
Lopez 34, Crescent 14
Crescent 0 0 0 14— 14
Lopez 8 14 0 12— 34
L—33 run (run conversion)
L—17 pass (run failed)
L—80 run (run conversion)
L—1 run (run failed)
C—Derek Findley 31 pass from Mike Zapien (Findley pass from Zapien)
L—54 pass (run failed)
C—Zapien 5 run (run failed)
Rushing— C: Zapien 11-90, Bamer 7-77, Larson 9-40, Findley 4-7.
Passing—C: Zapien 3-4-1, 38 yards; Bamer 1-10-1, 6 yards.
Returns—C: Larson 3-105.
Sequim wins league tourney
SEQUIM — The Olympic League champion Sequim Wolves captured the league’s seeding tournament Saturday at Sequim High School.
The Wolves beat Olympic 3-1 in the semifinals and then defeated powerhouse North Kitsap 3-0 in the championship match.
In the first match, Sequim beat the Trojans 25-12, 25-17, 23-25, 25-18.
Ironically, Olympic was the only team in league to win a game from the Wolves this season. While Sequim beat the Trojans 3-1 in the regular season, it blanked all of the other teams 3-0.
The Vikings weren’t able to take a game from the Wolves but they stayed close in all three games.
Sequim won the championship match 25-21, 25-22, 25-20.
In the semifinals, the second-place Vikings beat third-place Klahowya 25-21, 25-22, 25-20.
In the third-place seeding match, fourth-place Olympic upset Klahowya 18-25, 25-15, 25-21, 25-22.
As the tournament champion, Sequim advances to the West Central District tourney as the Olympic League’s No. 1 seed, the No. 2 seed at districts.
Port Angeles already qualified for districts as the league’s No. 5 seed after losing to Olympic in a seeding playoff last week.
The Roughriders will open district play against White River on Friday at Franklin Pierce High School in Tacoma in the first round at 5 p.m. while the Wolves get a first-round bye.
Sequim opens against the Port Angeles-White River winner Saturday at 10 a.m. at Franklin Pierce.