Fourth-quarter collapse downs Vikings

Loss drops football team to 1-2 record.

“POULSBO – For the first three quarters, the fans of the North Kitsap Vikings saw what they wanted to see out of their football team. North Kitsap took a lead, then lost it, then regained it. But in the fourth quarter, the team’s defense couldn’t stop the Peninsula Seahawks, and the Vikings offense proved all too easy to stifle. The Seahawks scored 27 points in the final quarter. The Vikings scored none. And they lost, 38-16. The game didn’t start smoothly for quarterback Ryan Buchanan, who threw an interception on the first Vikings drive. But Patrick Gilbert followed on the very next play with an interception of Seahawks’ quarterback Joey Dilley, and the Vikings had the ball again. They failed to convert, but the Seahawks did not. They kicked a field goal on their third possession of the game to make the score 3-0. North Kitsap answered almost immediately. On a drive that started on their own 43, Chris Allsop and Trevor Beslanwitch ran the ball, and Buchanan used his legs to eat up 13 yards on a rollout. Then, on a 4th and 12 play on the Peninsula 22, Buchanan fired a pass to the end zone that Jason Mooney hauled in over his shoulder. Buchanan’s arm proved trusty on the two-point conversion, too, as he zipped a pass to Mike Holm in the right side of the end zone. Vikings led 8-3 at the end of the first quarter. The Seahawks answered in the second, as running back Brandon Dodd found a huge hole in the Vikings defense, running his way to a 16-yard touchdown. The two-point attempt worked as Collin Pederson, the Seahawks’ bruising fullback, bounced his way into the end zone. Now Peninsula held an 11-8 lead. The Vikings got a huge play from running back Neil Krech, who had a larger part in the offense Friday than he had in the previous two games. Krech weaved his way through the Seahawks for a 22 yard gain, running the ball from North Kitsap territory onto the Peninsula half of the field. But the Vikings didn’t convert on that possession. In fact, neither team converted anything for the rest of the first half, and at halftime the score was still 11-8. For the first few possessions of the second half, each team battled back and forth, neither gaining or giving up much ground. That changed for the Vikings with a drive that began on their own 28. First Allsop ran up the left sideline for nine yards. Then Krech sprinted up the right sideline for a long gain. With ten yards to go to the end zone, Buchanan again took to the air, passing to Mike Holm just in front of the end zone. Holm leaped into the end zone, brushing by a Seahawk defender to do so. Again the two-point conversion worked, and again North Kitsap held a lead, 16-11. That was the score at the end of the third. In the fourth everything changed. A Vikings drive stalled, and when a defense back overshot Seahawks receiver Jermaine Walker, Walker ran untouched down the sideline for a 55-yard touchdown. The two-point conversion failed and Peninsula’s lead was 17-16. Walker wasn’t done with the Vikings. On the kickoff, he took the ball, and ran up the sideline, again untouched, for his second touchdown of the quarter. This time the Seahawks kicked the ball, and now their lead was 23-16. The next drive proved unsuccessful for the Vikings. An Allsop run gained little ground, and Krech was also hit for a short gain. Buchanan, tossing a pass, was hit as he threw, and the ball bounced incomplete. The Seahawks were more successful in their drive. Giving the ball to 235-pound. fullback Collin Pederson, they let him carry half the Vikings downfield with him, as he ran five times in the drive. The drive ended with another touchdown pass, with Peninsula quarterback Joey Dilley throwing to a wide-open 84, standing in the corner of the end zone walked like he was waiting for a bus back to Gig Harbor. With the kick the score was 31-16, and Peninsula still was not done. Dilley tossed another touchdown pass to make it 38-16, the final score of the game. We played three quarters of darn good football, Coach Jerry Parrish said after the fourth quarter had mercifully ended. Then we folded. Parrish took some of the blame himself, saying, We folded because of bad coaching. We didn’t have kids in positions to make the plays. And that’s my fault. Parrish didn’t have many positive words for his team, but he thought that Neil Krech stepped in and played well, Buchanan threw the ball pretty well, and Leif Olson stepped in and played well at right tackle. Parrish was asked what the team would work on for next week’s matchup with Olympic. Parrish said, Defense. “