The Wolverines were poised to celebrate 40 years of football with a season-opening win until a fourth-quarter interception deep in their opponents territory gave Anacortes a new lease on life.
With 68 seconds left in regulation, Seahawks quarterback Jared Douglas hooked up with wide receiver Andrew Medalia for their second touchdown of the game to tie the score at 19 points apiece. Kicker Kyle Jones booted the extra-point through the uprights to give Anacortes its first lead of the non-league contest, capping a come-from-behind 20-19 victory, Friday, Sept. 6, on the Wolverines home field.
With the win, the Seahawks avenged a 21-0 loss in their season opener at home a year ago against the Wolverines.
"We were not in the kind of game condition we should have been," said Head Coach Richard Ledford, making his debut in a second tour of duty as head coach of the Wolverines. "I take the blame for that. I need to work harder. We need to be in the kind of condition where we can hold a lead like we had tonight or even to increase it."
Friday Harbor grabbed an early 12-0 lead as Nate Steenkolk rushed for two touchdowns in the Wolverines first two possessions of the game. But they failed to convert on each of the extra-point attempts. Steenkolk gained at total of 104 yards on 12 carries for the game.
With five seconds remaining in the opening quarter, Douglas hit Madalia on a 33-yard touchdown pass to narrow the deficit to 12-7.
The 2013 season marks the 40th year for the Friday Harbor football program. Friday Harbor fans honored the program milestone and players from years past with a pre-game and a halftime celebration. Fifteen former players were inducted into the school's newly formed football "Hall of Fame" at the half.
The Wolverines dominated on the ground, out-gaining the Seahawks 173-112. But Anacortes capitalized on its passing game, and on turnovers and Friday Harbor miscues, to battle back into the contest.
Senior Amer Melic gave Friday Harbor a 19-7 lead by returning the second half kickoff 80 years for a touchdown. The Seahawks again sliced into the deficit with a rushing TD at the end of the third period. They trailed 19-13 going into the fourth quarter and held the Wolverines scoreless in the final period of play.
"We made mistakes tonight that we can correct," Ledford said. "There's nothing that happened out there that can't be corrected. We just have to work a little harder."
The Wolverines (0-1) face Lynden Christian (1-0) on the road, Friday, Sept. 13, in the first of a two-game season series, the first of which is a non-league contest. Kickoff is 6 p.m.