Homecoming no solution; BHS skid hits five

Bremerton quarterback Jacob Belden (5) fumbles the ball against North Thurston on Friday during BHS
Bremerton quarterback Jacob Belden (5) fumbles the ball against North Thurston on Friday during BHS' Homecoming game. North Thurston won 35-7.
— image credit: Jesse Beals/staff photo

A trip to concessions was ample time to miss Bremerton unravel Friday against North Thurston.

The Knights yielded three touchdowns in 1 minute, 9 seconds during the second quarter of a 35-7 loss at Memorial Stadium on Homecoming.

The scoring barrage started on a Taylor Warner 19-yard touchdown run with 9:14 left before halftime and the game tied 7-7. Drew Reid intercepted a Jacob Belden pass on the second play of the ensuing possession and returned it 20 yards for a touchdown to make it 21-7. Belden then threw an incomplete backwards pass — considered a lateral — on the Knights' very next play and Joseph Alvis returned it 26 yards for a score.

The score was 28-7 when the flurry ended at the 8:05 mark.

"It's unfortunate that the (final) score was 35-7 ... it didn't reflect the game, I don't think," Bremerton coach Nate Gillam said of his team's fifth-consecutive loss.

Most agonizing, the Knights' offense was clicking before the 21-point swing.

Sophomore Kyle Kennedy, who finished with 123 rushing yards, carried eight times on the opening drive to set up a 7-yard Theo Robinson touchdown reception that gave Bremerton (1-5 overall, 0-4 league) a 7-0 lead.

"We finally moved the ball," Gillam said of the previously stagnant offense, shut out in two of its previous three games.

Later in the half, however, Gillam deviated from the run-game and chose to give Belden free reign through the air. The choice backfired, beginning with the interception and backwards pass.

"Tonight everything was working, so we thought 'Let's see what we can do,'" Gillam said of the play calling. "We kind of gambled a little bit more than we should have."

Belden finished 12 of 20 for 119 yards and a touchdown, but threw three interceptions.

"Partly, it's just Jacob trying to make things happen. I think he's just gotten (into) that habit of trying to force something when it's not there," Gillam said. "He tries too hard. You can't fault him for that. It's something we've been working with him on for two or three weeks now."

Kennedy's performance is reason for optimism, and he may be the one Gillam turns to as the season unfolds.

"He did well, (he's) probably what we should have stuck with," Gillam said.

Neither team scored in the second half as the game slowed down and Bremerton's defense tightened. And other than the quick 21 second-quarter points, 14 of which were on wam-bam plays, the game remained fairly even.

"I'm not upset," Gillam said. "We just gave them 14 points on two plays."

Bremerton travels to North Kitsap (5-1, 3-1), coming off a big win against Capital, at 7 p.m. Friday.

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