The Sooke Pre-Atom Seahawks came up just short in their tackle football season debut in Nanaimo on April 6.
With the score 13-12 in favour of the host Bombers, the Seahawks stood stout on a third and goal to keep Nanaimo out of their end zone early in the fourth quarter. Taking over in the shadow of their own goalposts, the Seahawks offence moved the ball down the field, getting key runs from Hunter Swift and Brody Reinsch.
With just 26 seconds remaining, Sooke faced a third and long from inside Nanaimo’s 20 yard line with the game on the line. Swift fought hard for every yard, started left, cut back to the right, broke numerous attempted tackles, but the swarming Bombers’ defence stopped him shy of the first down marker. Nanaimo scored a long touchdown on the last play of the game to make the final score 19-12.
Swift had a monster game, accounting for both scores and numerous long runs. He also laid some big hits on the defensive side of` the ball, showing why he is one of the best pre-atom players on the Island.
Tagish Page, playing his first real game at centre, was nearly flawless with his snaps and blocking. Workhorse Michael Lundell played every snap of the game and had a couple of sacks on defence. Christian Kaisinger and Logan Banebridge were the other experienced Seahawks, and both had strong games, including a great play when Banebridge and first-year player Gabe Nelson double-teamed a Nanaimo defender and blocked him clear across the field, nearly depositing him on his bench.
The rest of the Seahawks, including Reinsch, were playing in their first real game. James Mullen and Wesley Johnson led the way physically, while Weston White flew around the field on defence. William Daoust had a couple nice rushing attempts, and was just a zig instead of a zag away from some big gains.
Offensive tackle Kiran Rheault worked hard opening holes for his running backs and defensive tackle Zander Adams helped keep the Bombers’ backs in check. Also, a quartet of seven-year-olds, Heath White, Dayton Planes, Mitchell Sutherland and Trystyn Schroeder showed glimpses of a bright future.
By Nathan Lowther