Ferndale uses big plays to take down Wildcats / Football

Ferndale scores on five long plays to defeat Oak Harbor.

Ferndale scored five times from long range to defeat the visiting Oak Harbor High School football team 35-18 Friday, Oct. 14.

The Golden Eagles, undefeated and ranked fourth in the state 3A AP poll, face third-ranked and unbeaten Squalicum next week in a battle for first place in the Wesco North. Oak Harbor, now 2-2 in league and 5-2 overall, hosts Arlington (2-2, 3-4) at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21.

It was all or nothing for the Ferndale offense in the Golden Eagles’ win over Oak Harbor. Ferndale scored on plays of 92, 73, 44, 37 and 27 yards. Four of those scores came on the first play of a drive; the other was on the second play.

Outside of the scoring plays, Ferndale gained only 79 yards and recorded just three first downs. Fifty-nine of those yards and two of those first downs came in the same drive. Just two of those yards came in the second half.

The theme of the night came in the game’s first play. Ferndale’s Cole Semu zipped 73 yards for a touchdown.

Oak Harbor answered in its second possession when Taeson Hardin ripped off a 63-yard TD run. Oak Harbor’s PAT kicking game has been shaky all season, so the Wildcats went for two after each of their touchdowns Friday; all failed.

Ferndale scored twice in just over a minute late in the second quarter.

The Golden Eagles recovered an Oak Harbor fumble at the Wildcat 37, and on the second play, Ben Broselle went the distance.

Ferndale used its timeouts to stop the clock as Oak Harbor went three-and-out. An 18-yard punt into a stiff wind gave the Golden Eagles the ball at the Wildcat 44. On the first play, James Hinson hit tightend Jacob Kildall for a touchdown, and Ferndale led 21-6 at the half.

Oak Harbor took the second half kickoff and drove 73 yards to make it 21-12. Princeton Lollar (27 yards) and TJ Hollins-Passmore (17 yards) provided much of the yardage, setting up Lollar’s 3-yard TD run.

Oak Harbor had only one penalty in the game, but it was costly. The Wildcats, on fourth-and-four, ran just enough to get a first down at the Ferndale 35, but a holding penalty wiped out the play and forced Oak Harbor to punt.

The punt rolled dead at the Ferndale 8, and seconds later Semu split the Oak Harbor defense for a 92-yard score, pushing the Golden Eagles’ lead to 28-12.

Oak Harbor recovered a fumble at the Ferndale 37 with 6:34 left in the game. Hardin’s 18-yard run set up an 8-yard touchdown pass from Caleb Fitzgerald to Josh Coe, making it 28-18.

Ferndale recovered the onside kick and then went three-and-out.

Oak Harbor turned the ball over on downs at its own 27, and Broselle scored on the first play to set the final count.

For the game, Lollar bulled his way for 172 yards on 32 carries; Hardin had 94 on 15.

Fitzgerald, making his first start at quarterback, completed six of 15 passes for 24 yards for one touchdown and an interception.

Semu finished with 165 yards on nine runs, and Broselle added 114 on 10 carries.