I’ve covered the Timberwolves twice this season, and it’s been the two games where they’ve actually been behind. Ironically, in facing deficits of 10-0 (at Stanwood in the season opener) and 21-7 (Friday against Kamiak), they preceded to score 35 unanswered points on both occasions.
The momentum shifts have featured uncanny similarities, and it’s as if fourth-ranked Jackson (6-0, 3-0 Wesco South) simply finds another gear defensively.
Take, for instance, the Stanwood game. Jackson caused a turnover or allowed zero first downs on six series in the final three quarters.
In the second half of Friday’s 42-21 home win over Kamiak (3-3, 3-1), Jackson sacked Jake Sortor six times. The star quarterback had a minus-15 yards on 15 carries after halftime because of this constant pressure.
“I said ‘Hey, the pendulum of momentum has swung back to us, so let’s just kind of put the gas pedal down and get after them,'” said Jackson coach and defensive coordinator Vincent, who particularly praised senior sack-masters Anthony Mortera and Paul Sparks.
Following Riley Carr’s stunning 67-yard touchdown – he side-stepped a would-be tackler at midfield and then somehow ran past two oncoming defenders — that gave Jackson a 35-21 lead, Sparks knocked Sortor out of the game on a gigantic sack on first down deep in Kamiak territory.
Sortor (7 of 18 for 142 yards, 21 carries for 22 yards) returned a play later, only to get drilled again for another 10-yard loss. The Knights were done in for good on the next play when Jake White recovered a blocked punt in the end zone for the final score.
“I thought our D-line played a really good game, and our secondary – particularly in the second half,” said Vincent, whose team hasn’t allowed a third-quarter point yet. “It was a total team effort.”
The Timberwolves take their defense on the road next week when they face Mariner (2-4, 1-3). Kamiak has a non-league game at No. 10 Marysville-Pilchuck (6-0).