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Orcas win a whale of a game
Brushing aside the 200 yards in penalties combined, the West Sound Orcas home fans were treated to a big 20-16 victory over the Pierce County Bengals Saturday night at Bremerton Memorial Stadium.
The win boosted the Orcas record to 3-2 for the season as the team prepares to finish the season with four games on the road.
Hidden behind the Orcas 130 penalty yards mostly personal fouls was a rejuvenated Orcas offense, led by newly appointed quarterback Ed Robertson.
Robertson, who threw for 233 yards off the bench last week in his Orcas debut, showed another facet to his game running.
Fresh off the USS Lincoln, Robertson has proven to be an instant sparkplug for a team that was lagging on offense prior to last weeks 25-0 win against the Washington Cavaliers.
Robertson only passed for 96 yards and a touchdown, but didnt need to throw much because of the successful ground game.
He finished with 60 yards rushing, with some of his biggest gains coming off busted plays.
The Orcas running game by committee finished to the tune of 165 yards rushing.
We wanted to give the offense the opportunity to run the ball, McDaniel said. We had a passing game last week...we wanted to show everybody that we could run the ball. The running game was good from the start.
The Orcas opened the game from its own 32 yard line and marched 68 yards in 14 plays to score an unorthodox touchdown.
Facing a 4th down and goal, holder Darnell Curry bobbled the snap and pulled out and found Louie Llamas open in the endzone for a five-yard touchdown pass.
On the teams next possession, Robertson hit receiver Justin Kelly for a 24-yard touchdown to take a 13-0 lead.
The Bengals took advantage of two 15-yard personal fouls to score a touchdown and two-point conversion in the second quarter.
After going scoreless in the third quarter, Orcas running back Andy Alfred rumbled six yards for a touchdown to give them a 20-8 lead with 11:14 left in the game.
The Orcas defense stifled the Bengals passing game the entire night, and they looked to have all but guaranteed a win after two late interceptions from cornerback Aaron Thomas.
But, the Orcas ended up punting and turned the ball over on its next two possessions to give the Bengals a fighting chance.
Pierce County took advantage of the Orcas miscues by scoring a touchdown with 1:44 left.
The Bengals last gasp an onside kick was thwarted by West Sounds Malcom DeWalt, who successfully recovered the kick.
Now the Orcas, who are in a playoff position, embark on a four-game road swing to conclude the season.
McDaniel said the games only get bigger from here, especially with next weeks game at the Renton Ravens.
We got the Ravens coming up and theyre tough this year, McDaniel said. Thats the game Im looking forward to.