The Seward football program got its Southcentral Conference championship defense off and running Saturday with a 32-12 win over nonconference opponent Valdez in Seward.
The Seahawks got two scoring plays from Beau Freiberg and one each from Brandon Lynch, Gabe Schrock and Shayne Sullivan, and the 32 points were more than Seward scored in all but one of its games last year, something Seward head coach Kelly Cinereski attributed to a talented but young offensive line.
“The kids played hard,” Cinereski said. “They did the little things right, and did what we asked them to do.”
Cinereski said the Valdez coach has the Seahawks down for over 400 yards of offense, and added the Seward defense stepped up and played as a team.
Cinereski also said Valdez successfully recovered three onside kicks, something that was made more doable with the rain, but the breaks went both ways as Seward grabbed several turnovers on Valdez.
“They played well, but they fumbled a few times,” Cinereski said. “It was a wet and sloppy game, and we capitalized on that.”
Seward will take to the road next week in a nonconference clash with the defending division III state champions.
Kodiak 21, Homer 8
The Mariners opened their 2017 season with a loss Saturday to Kodiak at home.
Homer got off to a fast start with a 40-yard pick six by Teddy Croft, who intercepted Bears quarterback Shaun Walton and raced to the endzone for a 6-0 lead. The Mariners added two points on a run by Noah Fisk.
However, Kodiak came back with 21 unanswered points, starting with a short 1-yard pass by Walton to receiver Isaiah Galindez in the final seconds of the first half to close the gap to 8-7.
Kodiak took the lead early in the third quarter with a 1-yard carry by Kaleb Finley to go up 14-8, then added to their lead less than three minutes later on an 8-yard run by Hamo Sega.
Finley finished with 100 rushing yards on 19 carries to lead Kodiak, while Walton hit 8-of-15 passes for 126 yards. Overall, Kodiak outgained Homer 322 to 178 in offensive yards.
Croft and Dawson Felde combined to go 0-for-7 with two interceptions. Fisk led the team in rushing with 73 yards on 19 carries, while Croft had 68 yards on 14 runs, and had two picks on defense.