Oak Harbor uses turnovers to spank Spartans | Football

Oak Harbor
Oak Harbor's Michael Labelle (30) rips the ball from a Stanwood runner, one of five turnovers caused by the Wildcats.
— image credit: John Fisken / Whidbey News-Times

The Wildcats were a killjoy.

Twice Stanwood appeared poised to get back in its football game against Oak Harbor, and twice the Wildcat defense forced turnovers to suck the life out of the Spartans. From there Oak Harbor caused three more turnovers and rolled to a 48-3 Wesco 3A win in Stanwood Friday, Sept. 28.

The Spartans were picked in one preseason coaches' poll to finish second in the Western Conference 3A North division, one spot ahead of the Wildcats. Stanwood lived up to the prediction with wins the first two weeks, but, inexplicably dropped the next two going into the Oak Harbor tilt.

Stanwood is talented, Oak Harbor coach Jay Turner said, but just isn't clicking right now, and the Wildcats wanted to make sure the Spartans stayed out of sync.

Stanwood, with the help of a long pass play, drove to the Oak Harbor 20 on the game's first possession. After the drive stalled, the Spartans booted a 36-yard field goal.

The Wildcats quickly squelched that joy with two big plays. Isaiah Trower raced 56 yards to set up a 27-yard touchdown toss from Ian Kolste to JoJo Webster. Frank Grecco kicked the first of six PATs in seven attempts.

Oak Harbor struck again, this time capping a drive on a 10-yard run by Trower. The point-after kick missed.

The Spartans got a momentary lift on the ensuing kickoff with a long return, but Sheyenne Sams stripped the ball and recovered the fumble in the first of two killer turnovers.

The Wildcats pounded out another drive, Fred Webster powered over the final 17 yards and Oak Harbor led 20-3.

The Spartans built some confidence with a long drive that took them inside the Wildcat 5-yard line. About to score and cut the lead in half, the Spartans were slapped back by another devastating turnover.

Wildcat defensive lineman Dayne Herron knocked the ball out of the hands of the Spartan runner and Sams picked it up with nothing but 99 yards of green in front. Sams, a sprinter on the Wildcat track team, out raced a trail of Spartans for a 27-3 lead. Stanwood was done.

The Wildcat defense wasn't, coming up with three more turnovers in the game, including an interception by Nate Stanford.

Julian Faralan scored on a one-yard run and Oak Harbor lead 34-3 at the half.

In the third quarter, Kolste threw a 13-yard touchdown to Troy Sturdevant and a short pass to JoJo Webster who covered 41 yards for another score.

Kolste threw just nine passes in the game, completing six, with half of those going for scores, for 138 yards. JoJo Webster hauled in three of the passes for 82 yards.

While JoJo led the receivers, his brother Fred paced the runners, grinding out 124 yards on 15 carries. Trower finished with 94 yards on only six runs.

In all, Oak Harbor, which used 12 ball carriers, ran for 270 yards.

Dakota Sinchak led the defense with seven tackles and Herron had five; CJ Savers collected a sack.

Turner said Herron "played a good game on both sides of the ball." He added, "It was his best game by far."

Oak Harbor (2-0, 4-1) plays a nonleague game at Mount Vernon (1-4) at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5.


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