It might not look good in practice but it sure was effective Friday night.
Sequim defender Austin Sanford placed a free kick just outside the box for a David LaBeaume header with five minutes left as the Wolves edged rival Port Townsend 2-1 on Friday night.
"Its not something we’re good at," Sanford said about the free kick, following Friday’s big Olympic League victory. "He (LaBeaume) got a good head in."
Sanford and LaBeaume paired up for the game’s first score, also on a free kick about 25 minutes into the game. And with Sequim keeper Matt Bedinger coming up with a pair of big saves early on, it looked like the Wolves might pick up their third shutout of the season.
But Port Townsend star Luis Quintana, the league’s leading scorer, converted a penalty kick with about six minutes left in the first half to knot the game at 1-1.
Throughout most of the second half, the Wolves and Redskins played rough-and-tumble with both teams getting decent looks at the goal. LaBeaume looked like he might put Sequim ahead by himself with a solo jaunt into Redskin territory with 10 minutes on the game clock, but was denied.
Soon after, however, the Redskins picked up a foul 40 yards from their own goal. That’s when Sanford launched a nearly perfect, looping kick that LaBeaume redirected for his fourth score of the season.
"We practice and practice that – it’s a great weapon," Sequim coach Dave Brasher said.
Port Townsend quickly mounted an attack in the final five minutes, but to no avail.
"Definitely it was a good game, really hard-fought," Sanford said. "Their fouls (were) what we capitalized on."
Since 2006, the Redskins have been a tough match-up for the Wolves: Sequim is 2-4-1 in those seven contests.
Brasher said his team seemed to have a more diversified attack than Port Townsend and it paid off in the end.
The win helps Sequim (3-1-0 in league, 5-2-0 overall) slip past P.T. for third in the league and, most importantly, behind only Kingston in the 2A division.
On April 7, Kingston’s Buccaneers showed why they are a good bet to repeat as Olympic League champions. The second-year school saw Chance Pruiett score off a header in the first 10 minutes, then assist on Bryan Bain’s score at 23 minutes for the game’s only scores, a 2-0 Buccaneer shutout in Kingston.
"We played much better the second half," Brasher said.
The Wolves still are seeking their first score against Kingston: Sequim was 0-2-1 against the Buccaneers last season as the first-year squad surprised many by winning the overall Olympic League title.
Sequim needs to keep winning and see someone mar Kingston’s perfect league record for a shot at the Olympic League championship. But there are many games before that’s decided and Sequim gets plenty of them soon. Because of the Hood Canal bridge closure in early May, Sequim gets a packed schedule of games starting April 17 when they play at Cascade Christian. The Wolves play seven games in 11 days.
"It’s the team intensity that’s going to get us through these games," Sanford said.
Sequim was scheduled to host North Kitsap on April 13 – results were unavailable at press time.
Reach Michael Dashiell at email@example.com.