Sports

Wolves whip Washington, push into state playoffs

With a game against powerful Fife looming two weeks away and a road trip to lowly Washington in between, the conditions were ripe for Sequim to have a "letdown" game.

Someone forgot to tell the Wolves.

Travis Decker ran for 90 yards and two touchdowns while Drew Rickerson was nearly perfect in throwing for 138 yards and a score as Sequim blasted Washington 36-19 on Oct. 31, securing the Olympic League No. 2 playoff seed.

After what Sequim coach Erik Wiker called a slow start, Sequim scored 21 points in the decisive second quarter and held the host Patriots to just seven points through three quarters of play.

Sequim (5-1 in league, 7-2 overall) has victories against Eatonville and North Mason, who are battling for the league's third and final state playoff berth.

This season marks Sequim's third consecutive trip to the state playoffs and fifth consecutive postseason appearance.

"They are preparing to go to state," Wiker said. "They did a good job of answering that (letdown possibility)."

Decker opened the scoring with a 1-yard plunge in the first quarter and Chris Pruden added a two-point conversion.

Clancy Catelli made it 15-0 with a 3-yard score in the second quarter before Washington got on the board. But Decker's 6-yard scamper made it 22-7 and Sequim fullback Brad Woolf scored from 8 yards out to make it 29-7 Sequim at halftime.

Rickerson, the Sequim quarterback who finished 9-of-13, found Catelli from 18 yards out for the only third-quarter score and a 36-7 Sequim lead.

"I think (the offense) was very balanced," Wiker said. "I definitely think it's going to pay off. We've got good line blocking for the run and the pass. We've already seen dividends."

Washington scored twice in the fourth quarter to close the gap.

"They had some really good defensive linemen and good skill guys," Wiker said.

But Sequim's defense kept the Patriots at bay for most of the game, forcing three interceptions and a fumble. Isaac Yamamoto led the team with 15 tackles while Alex Gillis had 13 stops. Catelli, Curtis Blodgett and Reed Omdal each had interceptions.

The Wolves racked up 300 yards of offense, 162 of that on the ground.

Sequim moves on to face Fife at home in the last game of the regular season. The Trojans (3-3 in league, 5-4 overall) dropped a 14-13 decision to North Mason last week, dropping them from playoff contention.

"The big thing I tell the kids is, 'The other scores don't matter.' It's all match-ups and attitude and ... how our team prepares," Wiker said.

In the opening round of the class 2A state playoffs, the Wolves will travel to face the top team from District 4, either the Greater St. Helens league champ Hockinson (7-2) or Evergreen League champ Tumwater (8-1); Sequim's opponent depends on seeding games this weekend.

The state playoff game is scheduled for either Nov. 14 or 15.

Sequim is 0-3 in state playoff games, coming within two minutes of knocking off heavily favored Tumwater last season before falling 22-20.

That's one of the few barriers Wiker and the Wolves haven't knocked down since he took over as coach in 2004.

"I think, as a program, we're all ready to go to the next level," he said.



Game notes:

Decker leads the team with 13 touchdowns, all rushing. He is 59 yards away from breaking the 1,000-yard barrier ... Rickerson's 138 passing yards were a season-high, two more than against North Mason Oct. 17. He now has 798 yards through the air ... With 39 yards on two catches, John Textor leads the Wolves with 263 receiving yards, nearly 22 yards per catch ... Woolf leads Sequim with 95 tackles, more than 10 per game ... Catelli has more solo tackles (22) than any other Wolf ... Omdal now has four interceptions, tops on the team ... Erik Huston was 4-for-4 on extra point kicks.



\Olympic/Nisqually

League standings

Team Lg. Over.

Steilacoom 6-0 9-0 Sequim 5-1 7-2 Eatonville 4-2 5-4 North Mason 4-2 6-3 Fife 3-3 5-4

Klahowya 1-5 3-6 Washington 1-5 1-8 Kingston 0-6 1-8

• League scores from week 9:

Sequim 36, Washington 19

Steilacoom 50, Kingston 21

North Mason 14, Fife 13

Eatonville 28, Klahowya 21

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