Neah Bay’s offensive outbursts were sudden and without mercy.
Cole Svec, the Red Devils’ rangy sophomore tailback, broke free for a 30-yard score early in the first quarter, adding 44- and 46-yard touchdowns in the next two offensive snaps for Neah Bay.
The Blackhawks had no answer for the tight-formation running game the Red Devils utilized to perfection, Elisha Winck’s 63-yard run through the gut of Lummi’s defensive line capping four consecutive plays from Neah Bay that all went for touchdowns.
And while Lummi responded with 22 unanswered points to take a 30-28 lead with 4:10 remaining in the second quarter after facing the early 20-point deficit, it was Neah Bay that claimed its seventh consecutive win over the Blackhawks 50-38 on Thursday, Oct. 17, at Lummi High School.
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“We needed to come up and make the tackles once,” Lummi coach Jim Sandusky said. “Give them credit, they pounded it at us. We were prepared — very prepared for this game. We made some key mistakes as far mechanically wrapping up.”
The Red Devils amassed 493 yards and seven touchdowns on the ground, Svec accounting for 230 of those yards and four scores on 18 carries.
And yet despite the gaudy performance by Svec, it was the Blackhawks’ offense that looked dominant for portions of the contest.
After falling down 28-8 with 9:10 to go in the second, quarterback Hank Hoskins orchestrated a five-play, 46-yard drive that ended with him bruising up the middle for a 6-yard score.
The Blackhawks’ defense, which until that point looked inept and unable to stop Neah Bay at all, held the Red Devils in check in their next drive, forcing a punt that was eventually blocked and recovered by Devin Cooper in the endzone for a touchdown.
As quickly as Lummi fell down, the Blackhawks caught Neah Bay on its heels and clinging to a 28-22 lead.
And again in the Red Devils’ next possession, Lummi’s defense stepped up.
Or more accurately, Dino Williams’ incredible play in the secondary, elevating high into the air on a deep ball from Neah Bay’s Rwehabura Munyagi and batting it back into the patient hands of Jacob Roberts for an interception.
Hoskins, who finished the game 11-of-26 passing for 114 yards, connected with Trazil Lane the very next play for a 39-yard score, converting on the 2-point conversion to take a 30-28 lead late in the second.
“They hung in there,” Sandusky said. “I wasn’t worried. ... We stopped them for several drives, but we bounced back. We took the lead, shoot.”
That momentum, as long as it took Lummi to capture, was short lived following a 90-yard touchdown run by Svec and a 63-yard score by Chris Martinez just before the half.
The Blackhawks held Neah Bay scoreless in the third, edging closer following a strong 2-yard score by Hoskins that brought it to 42-38 Red Devils.
But Neah Bay’s defense, which like Lummi’s at times looked inept in stopping the run, came up when it needed to most in the fourth quarter, halting the Blackhawks on fourth-and-1 on the goal line.
Lummi wasn’t able to conjure any more legitimate offensive threats, and Neah Bay added another long rushing score when Winck barreled 55 yards.
Sandusky was emphatic when speaking with his team afterward that he expects to again meet the Red Devils in the Class 1B state semifinals, just like the past few years.
He expects the outcome to be much different, too.
“Hey, you know we’re a better team,” he said, “and if we’re only going to beat them once this year, the next time is the one to do it.”
Hoskins finished with 131 yards and three rushing touchdowns on the game.
Neah Bay — Cole Svec run 30 (2-point conversion no good)
Lummi — Hank Hoskins run 3 (2-point conversion good)
Neah Bay — Svec run 44 (2-point conversion good)
Neah Bay — Svec run 46 (2-point conversion good)
Neah Bay — Elisha Winck run 63 (2-point conversion no good)
Lummi — Hoskins run 6 (2-point conversion good)
Lummi — Devin Cooper blocked punt recovery in end zone (2-point conversion no good)
Lummi — Trazil Lane 39 pass from Hoskins (2-point conversion good)
Neah Bay — Svec run 90 (2-point conversion no good)
Neah Bay — Chris Martinez 69 run (2-point conversion good)
Lummi — Hoskins 2 run (2-point conversion good)
Neah Bay — Winck 55 run (2-point conversion good)
RUSHING — Neah Bay: Cole Svec 18-230, Chris Martinez 17-130, Rwehabura Munyagi 7-(-2), Elisha Winck 3-114, Michael McGeen 2-(-4), Cameron Bruzzell 1-25. Lummi: Hank Hoskins 26-131, Devin Cooper 10-39, Jacob Roberts 2-6.
PASSING — Neah Bay: Rwehabura Munyagi 0-2-0-0. Lummi: Hank Hoskins 11-26-1-114, Jonathan Casimir 1-5-0-21.
RECEIVING — Neah Bay: None. Lummi: Devin Cooper 6-88, Willie Jones 2-10, Dino Williams 2-(-7), Jacob Roberts 1-5, Trazil Lane 1-39.