The turnaround is on for Wolves varsity football.
Following a tough 52-7 loss to the Kingston Buccaneers last year, Sequim (3-0 overall, 1-0 in the Olympic League) avenged the nasty loss to come from behind on Sept. 19 to upend the Bucs (0-3 overall), 27-19.
Players’ excitement resounded off the bleachers as they ran off the field toward the end of regulation yelling “We’re 3-0, baby!”
Sequim head coach Erik Wiker said the turnaround in the game came with a change in attitude and emotion.
“We were very flat and even tackling we’d have a zero yard gain and they’d get five,” he said. “We weren’t playing with a lot of emotion.”
The Wolves came out running though with quarterback Miguel Moroles sprinting to a 40-yard touchdown less than two minutes into the game.
He would finish with three touchdown runs of 40, 1 and 20 yards and a pass to receiver Ian Dennis.
But the Bucs pulled close multiple times as running back Garrett Rouser ran for 91 yards and a touchdown and quarterback Jack Colleto ran for a score. At halftime, Sequim trailed 16-14 following a blocked punt by the Bucs and Colleto’s TD run.
But under the feet of Moroles and his supporting cast, the Wolves took and maintained the lead with a 2-TD run by the quarterback and later a 5-yard-throw to Ian Dennis.
However, Kingston pushed it to the brink as defensive back Alex Barrett intercepted a deep Moroles pass that led to a Ryan Fick field goal with less than 8 minutes. Their next possession put them in a chance to tie in the waning minutes. With 2:14 to play, the Bucs passed their way with short yard throws to Sequim’s 16-yard line with a decision on fourth-and-two. Rouser ran up the middle and was stopped just short after officials measured.
Sequim took the ball over and faced a fourth down decision of their own. Moroles called the hard count drawing the defense offsides and ending the game with a knee.
Sequim saw stepped up play from its offense such as Dennis catching five passes for 80 yards, Bailey Earley seven catches for 35 yards and Gavin Velarde rushing for 58 yards on four carries.
Wiker attributed Moroles’ efforts to his hard work.
“When he’s hurdling guys, that’s not my call that’s his hard work and athletic ability and his desire,” he said.
Next up the Wolves travel to North Kitsap (3-0 overall) on Sept. 26 who beat Sequim 31-14 in Poulsbo last year.
Wiker said the key is a matter of just getting better each week.
“It’s a great turnaround but they haven’t quite hit their stride or potential yet,” he said “We shoot ourselves in the foot a lot. Some of it is their great play but when you shoot yourself in the foot so much it’s a little bit of stuff lingering from last year.”
For a game against the Vikings, he said it’s adding up the little things such as successful practices and being open to coaching suggestions.
“The guys are getting it,” Wiker said. “You can see them slowly beginning to believe in the whole thing.”
Sequim 27, Kingston 19
Kingston 7 9 0 3 – 19
at Sequim 7 7 13 0 – 27
S — Moroles 40 run (Espinoza kick), 10:32; K — Rouser 5 run (Fick kick), 1:37
S — Moroles 1 run (Espinoza kick), 10:35; K — safety (blocked punt), 6:30; K — Colleto 4 run (Fick kick), 3:20
S — Moroles 20 run (kick failed), 5:11; S — Dennis 5 pass from Moroles (Espinoza kick), 1:16
K — Fick 28 field goal, 7:51.
Olympic League week 3
standings (2A division)
Team Lg. Over.
North Mason 1-0 2-1
Olympic 1-0 2-1
Sequim 1-0 3-0
North Kitsap 0-0 3-0
Bremerton 0-1 2-1
Kingston 0-1 0-3
Port Angeles 0-1 2-1
Week 3 scores:
at Sequim 27, at Kingston 19
at Olympic 26, Bremerton 15
at North Mason 27, Port Angeles 14
at North Kitsap 26, Black Hills 7
Matchup: Sequim at North Kitsap
When: 7 p.m., Friday, Sept. 26
Where: at North Kitsap (Poulsbo)
Series (all-time): North Kitsap leads 32-11, 2 ties