The Seward Phoenix Log - News of the Eastern Kenai Peninsula since 1966

By Tommy Wells
Seward Phoenix LOG 

Houston ends 'Hawks playoff run


October 13, 2016 | View PDF

The clock struck midnight on the Seward High School Seahawks’ Cinderella season on Saturday afternoon in the semifinal round of the Alaska small-school state playoffs.

And it came with plenty of respect.

The Houston Hawks fought their way through a tough first half of play in Seward before finally netting a 44-6 victory in front of a large crowd. Houston managed to put together a 22-0 spree in the second half to secure its first-ever trip to the state finals.

The 2016 Peninsula Conference champion, Seward finished its most successful season in more than a decade with a 5-4 record.

Houston, the No. 2 seed from the Aurora Conference race, converted a turnover into a quick lead against Seward. The Hawks scooped up a fumble just 5:03 into the contest and quickly cashed it in for an 8-0 lead. They tacked on a second touchdown later in the first and took a 16-0 advantage.

The Seward defense helped the Seahawks get going later in the frame. Michael Wilps picked off a tipped ball and returned it to the Houston 20. Four plays later, Nik Pahno hit Rhett Sieverts with a touchdown pass on a 4th-and-13 play. Seward’s PAT attempt failed, leaving the Seahawks down 16-6.

The Hawks managed to regain the momentum late in the second, scoring on a short run that send Houston into the half holding a 22-6 advantage.

Houston, thanks to a couple of untimely turnovers, managed to blow the game open in the second half. The Hawks reeled off a 22-0 run in the final 24 minutes and raced to a stunning 38-point decision.

With the win, Houston improved to 7-2 and will now advance to face Eielson this weekend in Palmer in the ASAA small-school state championship game. Eielson defeated Aurora Conference runner-up Nikiski by a 70-18 margin at Buck Nystrom Field in Fairbanks.

Eielson, the defending small-school state champion, has won three of the last four small-school state titles. In addition to winning it all in 2015, they also won titles in 2012 and 2014.

One of Houston’s two losses this year came to Eielson as part of a 27-21 conference matchup in September. Their only other loss came to Kodiak in the season opener

Members of the 2016 Seward Seahawks’ football team includes Reid Broughton, Jed Christenson, Dusty Cottrell, Sage Ferguson, Beau Freiberg, Trenton Freiberg, Derek Harshman, Kris Hettick, Chris Kingsland, David Kirkpatrick, Brandon Lynch, Charles Mack, Gavin Medcalf, Kjell Nilsson, Nik Pahno, Chad Quinn, Ethan Schrock, Gabe Schrock, Rhett Sieverts, Logan Smith, Shayne Sullivan, Mike Wilps, Nick Woodard.


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