Wolves best Bellarmine, 21-13

Ryan Williams is a soft-spoken, unassuming player away from the field.

Opponents only wish has game was as modest on the gridiron as it is away from it.

Williams weaved through defenders on the opening kickoff and outpaced his defenders down the sideline for a 78-yard touchdown. It was his first kickoff return for a touchdown this season. He had three a year ago.

The early points proved critical as the Wolves held on for a 21-13 win in their homecoming game Friday against Bellarmine Prep in Narrows League play at Joe Knowles Field.

South Kitsap (4-2 overall, 3-2 league) seemed poised to rout the Lions in the first quarter when running back Sean Allison finished a 13-play, 73-yard drive with a 2-yard run off tackle for a touchdown. That score gave the Wolves a 14-0 lead with 4:26 minutes left in the first quarter.

And when the offense wasn’t moving, the defense stepped up. After stalling at their own 26-yard line, the Wolves punted. But they got the ball back three plays later when Jared Moore intercepted Lucas Schindele and returned it 24 yards to the Lions’ 26. Four carries — all by Allison — finished with a 10-yard touchdown run to put South up 21-0.

Bellarmine (2-4, 2-3) then took advantage of a turnover when South quarterback Bryan Dorsey was intercepted to start the Lions at their own 46. Nine plays later, Schindele scored on a 2-yard keeper to bring the score to 21-6 with 27 seconds left in the half.

But mired by mistakes — South was penalized 10 times for 130 yards — the Wolves weren’t able to maintain the momentum they established during the first half. A pass interference call on third-and-12 at the Wolves’ 26 helped the Lions maintain a drive. They converted a third-and-10 from South’s 13 on a 12-yard run by Schindele. He then scored on a 1-yard keeper the following play with 5:28 left in the game.

Bellarmine had an opportunity to send the game into overtime when it held the Wolves to just one first down on the next drive. The Lions took possession at their own 20 with 3:12 left. They faced a fourth-and-11 at their own 43 and Schindele’s pass fell incomplete. But pass interference was called, which gave the Lions a first down at the South 42.

The Lions later converted another fourth-down run by Schindele, who had 78 yards and two touchdowns on 26 carries, and without a timeout remaining, he spiked the ball with 21.7 seconds left. But his next pass fell incomplete, and he was flushed out of the pocket on third down before linebacker Robert Issa chased him down for a sack as time expired.

The win kept the Wolves near the middle of the 11-team league. Olympia (5-0), Gig Harbor (4-1), Mount Tahoma (4-1) and Foss (4-2) all have better league records than the Wolves.

South plays at 7 p.m. Friday against Foss at Mount Tahoma.

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