FORKS — Forks dug deep after spotting Sequim a 14-0 halftime lead, rallying behind a stingy defense which intercepted Wolves quarterback Lars Wiker three times in the second half, including in the final minutes of a 21-14 Spartans win Friday night.
Freshman Bubba Hernandez’s 78-yard option keeper touchdown run midway through the fourth quarter stood up as the Spartans inaugurated their renovated Spartan Stadium with a victory.
“He made guys miss all over the field and he hasn’t walked into the high school yet for class,” Forks head coach Trevor Highfield said.
The Spartans’ rally started along its defensive line with Sloan Tuamua and Walker Wheeler getting after Wiker.
“We started getting better pressure on the QB by getting some younger guys in the rotation,” Highfield said. “Our guys were coachable in terms of talking about what Sequim was doing and how we can stop it. I’m most proud of our team’s tenacity, to be down 14-0, but our locker room was up at halftime, they knew we had an opportunity. A very workman-like attitude from this group.”
Sequim scored twice through the air in the first half.
“Their quarterback is pretty good, he’s an athletic kid who slings it pretty well and makes good decisions,” Highfield said. “They were really hurting us in the screen game, tunnel screens, tailback screens. Those are plays that are tough to review and go over live for our defense in a first-game situation.”
Forks also was limited offensively with primary running back Nate Dahlgren not playing early on.
The Spartans made a switch to freshman Bubba Hernandez at quarterback and he produced on Forks’ second drive.
“Landon Olson caught a 12-yard TD pass and Bubba made some key plays in the passing game, a 25-yarder to Gunner Rogers, to set us up,” Highfield said.
Landin Davis intercepted a Sequim pass and capped off the third quarter with a 5-yard rushing TD to tie the game at 14-all.
“He did a tremendous job of running hard and playing physically for us, and he made keys plays on both sides of the ball,” Highfield said.
Dahlgren also got some carries in the second half to keep Sequim honest.
“He made some significant gains for us,” Highfield said.
A Noah Foster interception set up Hernandez’s go-ahead run to paydirt.
“The team saw the skill set [Hernandez] has at that position, but it was a definite team win. “We’ve been able to showcase Nate’s talents, but we were without him for much of the game and we found a way to get the win.”
Sequim drove deep into Forks territory with less than a minute to go but the Spartans’ defense, helped by a Wolves’ holding penalty, stiffened in the red zone and Olson picked off Wiker to ice the game late.
Forks (1-0) hosts Neah Bay at 7 p.m. Friday.
Sequim (0-1) visits Bainbridge (1-0) on Sept. 14
Kingston 28, East Jefferson 8
Kingston — Aaron Glanz returned the second-half opening kickoff 70 yards for a touchdown to pull the Rivals within 14-8, but East Jefferson couldn’t overcome the Buccaneers’ running game and turnovers in a road loss Friday.
The Rivals allowed a 44-yard TD pass on the first play of the fourth quarter to put Kingston up 21-8 and a Cash Holmes pass was intercepted in the end zone by Kingston to effectively put the game away.
Kingston added a rushing TD with less than two minutes to play to account for the final score.
East Jefferson (0-1) hosts state power King’s on Friday at 7 p.m. at Memorial Field.
Crescent 22, Oakville 0
OAKVILLE — Crescent overcame a lot of penalties and played a spectacular game on defense, shutting out Oakville 22-0 on a hot day in southern Washington.
The game was locked in a 0-0 tie at halftime.
“It was a grind. It was really hot. Both teams were out of shape. We just grinded it out,” said Crescent coach Brian Shimko. He told his team whoever scored in the second half was going to win.
Shimko said the player of the day was a newcomer, sophomore Loki Ellis, playing his first game for the Loggers. He had four quarterback sacks and three fumble recoveries.
“He stepped up on defense. They had no answer for him,” he said. Shimko said Oakville had the ball on the 3-yard line and that he had Ellis blitz up the middle. He literally stole the ball from Oakville’s quarterback during the handoff.
On offense, the Loggers finally went to a Wildcat offense and started scoring. Henry Bourm ran for two touchdowns, one for 11 yards and another for 52 and scored two 2-point conversions to give the Loggers a 16-0 lead. Bourm then threw a 36-yard touchdown pass to Lukas Love.
Shimko said one thing he wasn’t happy with was penalties. He estimated that Crescent had 15 to 18 penalties, some of which negated big runs with holds and blocks in the back 15 yards behind the play.
Bourm also had a 63-yard run and led the Loggers with 193 yards rushing on 13 carries as Crescent finished with more than 300 yards rushing.
Conner Bauers ran eight times for 45 yards, while Dominiq Sprague ran eight times for 41 yards. Tommy Leonard had 10 rushes for 31 yards, but lost some big runs on penalties.
Through the air, Bourm was 5-for-15 for 113 yards and one interception. Bauers had a completion for 7 yards.
Love had two receptions for 63 yards, while Sprague had two catches for 16, Bauers one for 27 and Josh Berson one for 14.
Crescent (1-0) will host a 1A team, Charles Wright, at 1 p.m. Saturday in Joyce.