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Football: North Mason outlasts Sequim in slugfest
Perhaps the scoreboard had an idea of what was coming.
Only a malfunction to Sequim High’s electronic scoreboard could slow the offensive onslaught as visiting North Mason upended Sequim 69-46, spoiling SHS’s senior night as the Bulldogs prep for the playoffs.
It was the most points scored in a Sequim football game, surpassing the 93 combined points between Bainbridge and Sequim in 1996.
The Wolves, still seeking their first win of the season, simply couldn’t keep pace with the North Mason rushing attack as they gave up 487 rushing yards and the most points since 2000 (Lakes, 72).
Still, the Sequim offense managed 515 total yards and 46 points — a season high — against a North Mason defense featuring starters until the game’s final few moments.
“I’m happy with our effort, not giving up, and our demeanor,” Sequim coach Erik Wiker said. “(We were) playing with class.”
Tommy Marsh led a balanced Bulldog attack with 115 yards and a score on just six carries, as North Mason averaged more than 11 yards per attempt and saw six different players earn rushing scores.
Bulldog quarterback Matt Becker attempted just four passes, connecting on three — two of those wound up touchdown scores to Daniel Burggraaf.
Quarterback Miguel Moroles shouldered much of the load for Sequim’s offense, connecting on 24 of 541 passes for 326 yards and a score, and running for another 56 yards.
SHS senior Brett Wright excelled in his final home game with 14 catches for 212 yards and a touchdown, and added an electrifying 84-yard kickoff for a score in the first quarter.
“I had fun — it was hard to be sad,” Wright said.
Adam Knapman had his best game of the 2013 campaign, rushing for 127 yards and three scores.
This game, however, was in postseason-bound North Mason’s hands before halftime.
First half eruption
The Bulldogs needed just two plays from scrimmage to take a lead as Andy Renne blasted through the line for a 51-yard TD romp and 7-0 North Mason lead.
Wright answered immediately, picking up a bouncing kickoff and racing along the west sideline through Bulldog defenders for a score and 7-7 tie.
Not to be outdone, however, North Mason’s Marsh rambled 85 yards on his own on the ensuing kickoff for a 14-7 Bulldog lead. His squad claimed possession on the ensuing onside kick and four plays later Marsh was in the end zone again for a 21-7 North Mason advantage.
The Wolves managed one more scoring drive in the first half, a 10-play 59-yard effort capped by Adrian Espinoza’s 24-yard field goal that closed the gap to 24-10.
But North Mason exploded for three more first half scores, including a 47-yard Matt Becker-to-Burggraaf pass play, a Josh Becker 3-yard rush and a Victor McIntosh 30-yard scamper. North Mason took a 42-10 lead into halftime.
Second half fireworks
A Matt Becker 86-yard touchdown run put the Bulldogs up 49-10 and put North Mason within a score of the 45-point mercy rule that would keep the game clock running.
Sequim, however, had other plans.
The Wolves trimmed the deficit with touchdown runs by Knapman and Chris Whitaker.
North Mason, with starters seeing playing time until about five minutes remaining, kept pace with the persistent Wolves. The team trade scores on seven consecutive possessions until the scoreboard and game clock were finally exhausted.
On the game’s final play, Sequim’s Wright saved another North Mason score, tracking down Tyler Grewell from behind a few yards from the end zone.
Wright said he gets his never-give-up demeanor from assistant coach Rex Lott.
“Coach Rex, he’s got so much enthusiasm,” Wright said.
Future is bright
Sequim dropped all six of its home games in 2013, their first winless home-stand since a 0-9 campaign in 2000 under former coach Bill Anderson.
Sequim went 5-4 the next year under Anderson, and then went 10-0 and won the league title under Wiker three seasons later, in 2004.
In looking at the 2013 season, Wiker said he’s most frustrated with Sequim’s miscues, not the team’s cumulative effort.
“We have hurt ourselves as much as other teams have,” he said.
The Sequim coach, however, likes what he sees in the promise of a very young varsity lineup and a strong junior varsity team that finished 5-3 in 2013.
“We’ve had a lot of growth (this season),” Wiker said. “A lot of things we wanted them to work on, they did.”
The Wolves still have one more chance for a win in 2013 this week.
Sequim caps the 2013 season with a non-league crossover game at Foster on Thursday, Nov. 7 in Tukwila.
The Bulldogs (2-4 in Seamount League play, 2-7 overall) are coming off a Nov. 1, 22-20 loss at Ingraham.
Sequim last played Foster in 2003, a 17-14 Wolves win.
Wright said the key to knocking off Foster is attitude.
“Exactly what I saw in this game: Have fun,” he said.
Reach Michael Dashiell at firstname.lastname@example.org.