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Vikings sunk by Olympic's big plays
Olympic's secret weapon might not remain a secret much longer.Friday night, though, junior running back Jarrell Nelson, was elusive enough to give Olympic a 28-13 win over North Kitsap, scampering his way to 243 total yards and two touchdowns Friday night.He's a slasher, said happy Olympic coach Pete Weymiller after the game at Silverdale Stadium. He's an impact player.Weymiller has seen the confidence level of his team rise. Despite lukewarm preseason previews, the team has jumped out to a 2-1 record and is trying to stay near the top of the Olympic League.I think our kids are figuring out how good they are, Weymiller said.Friday night was a step in the right direction, as the Trojans faced the 0-2 Vikings.Olympic's first drive stalled, but several plays were previews of what lay ahead for the Trojans; those plays saw quarterback Will Gratz connect with Nelson for 14- and 15-yard gains.North Kitsap was also unable to do anything with the ball early. The Vikings' primary running back, junior James Smith, carved out gains of 11 and 14 yards. But Trojan linebacker Luke Switzer proved a match for Smith, hitting the Vikings' back once for a 2-yard loss and a second time for a 1-yard loss that ended a North Kitsap drive.After the two offenses drove, then stalled their way through the first quarter, Olympic got on the board first, with seven minutes left in the first half. Nelson turned a run up the left sideline into a 41-yard scamper that ended in the end zone.North pulled even in the opening seconds of the second half; sophomore James Hanson returned the opening kick 70 yards for a touchdown.But Olympic's next drive drew paydirt and gave Troy the lead back for good. Quarterback Gratz found his brother, Martin Gratz twice for gains of 12 and 19 yards. Then a short screen pass was turned into a big play by Nelson, who plunged into the line, then emerged unscathed to run up the right sideline. He gained 49 yards before Viking safety Jerrod Gonzales tripped him 6 yards from the end zone. Switzer's run from 1 yard out finished off the drive moments later.Gratz connected with Chris Lambert on a 56-yard touchdown play on Oly's next possession.As the fourth quarter began it was the Gratz-to-Nelson connection that again scored for the Trojans - this time the screen pass netted a 75-yard touchdown.The Vikings pieced together a drive in the final seconds, Foster lobbing several short passes as the Vikings finally moved down the field.With less than a minute left in the game, Foster hit receiver Patrick Gilbert for a 1-yard touchdown.Weymiller said more teams will key on Nelson.We won't be able to use him so much next week (against Shelton on the road this Friday, Sept. 28), Weymiller said. But last Friday night, the Trojans weren't thinking that far ahead. Although it was a dry night, Weymiller's shoulders were soaked with water as he made into his way into the locker room. A young fan asked him why.The team dumped water on me, Weymiller explained with a smile. They think they're in the big leagues now.