Seda shreds Sammamish

Islanders earn first win, 39-22

Chad Coleman/Mercer Island Reporter Mercer Island senior Phillip Seda runs through a hole in the defensive line as teammate Jack Gala (77) blocks Sammamish defenders. Seda tied for the second highest single game running total in school history with 226 yards during the game.

Chad Coleman/Mercer Island Reporter Mercer Island senior Phillip Seda runs through a hole in the defensive line as teammate Jack Gala (77) blocks Sammamish defenders. Seda tied for the second highest single game running total in school history with 226 yards during the game.

Islanders earn first win, 39-22

By Matt Phelps
Mercer Island Reporter

The Mercer Island football team beat the Totems at Sammamish High School, 39-22, on Thursday, earning head coach Bill Heglar his first win in maroon and white. But while the first win had some bumps along the way, Islander senior running back Phillip Seda saw nothing but open grass on his way to 226-yards rushing.

“We came out hard and played a hell of a game,” said Seda. “The blocking was great, there weren’t very many mistakes. The line did a great job.”

The total for Seda ties that of Greg Mahony for the second highest single game running total in school history. Mahony holds the high mark with 351 yards against Seattle Prep. Both marks were set last season.

Determined to get into the win column, Mercer Island moved the ball at will during their first possession of the game, driving 68 yards on nine plays. Islander Graham Maxwell pounded the ball into the end zone for a one-yard touchdown and the 7-0 lead.

While the Sammamish offense stumbled and bumbled their way through their first two possessions, Seda took control with an interception on defense and a 32-yard touchdown run to extend the lead to 13-0.

“[Chris] Kaestle had a great game blocking,” said Heglar. “They all did a good job blocking inside.”

Following a long kick return and three insignificant offensive plays, Sammamish got on the board with a 28-yard field goal.

The Islanders’ next possession ended in an interception in the end zone, giving the Totems an opportunity to get back into the game.

Precariously perched on the four-yard line, with negative four yards total offense, Sammamish chose to run the ball for only the second time during the game. The pitch went right, but the runningback cut back to the middle of the line, busting through the hole and running past Islander defenders. After forty yards the runningback cut back again, past three more defenders and into the open field to complete the 96-yard score. The Totems finished the game with 187 yards on the ground. A blocked extra point attempt left the Islander lead at 13-9.

Mercer Island went back to pounding the ball at the defensive line, mounting a 10-play drive for 65 yards, culminating in a Maxwell seven-yard touchdown run. But the Islanders again missed the extra point, leaving the score 19-9 heading into halftime.

Sammamish scored its second touchdown of the game on a fourth goal during the first possession of the second half, getting it back within a field goal.

Islander touchdowns by Seda and Andy Thompson extended the lead to 32-16. But the three missed extra points by the Islanders left Sammamish with a glimmer of hope down just two scores.

A 58-yard run and a 17-yard pass for a touchdown on their next drive set Sammamish up for a critical two-point conversion. But a dropped pass in the end zone left the Totems still needing two scores to tie. Sammamish finished the game just 6-for-22 passing for 58 yards, with two interceptions.

Islander Bobby Norton put the game away for Mercer Island on a seven-yard touchdown run late in the fourth quarter.

Overall, Seda scored two touchdowns while running nine gains of 10 yards or more, two rushes over 20 yards and two 30-plus yard gains. Sam Bliss led the defense with an interception and four tackles.

“They played hard,” said Heglar. “But I am glad we are still healthy for next week.”

Mercer Island will host Newport at 7:30 p.m. on Friday at Islander Stadium. Mercer Island is 1-2 in league play and 1-3 overall, while Newport is 2-1 in league play, including a 37-14 win over winless Interlake Thursday.


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