Gig Harbor head coach Aaron Chantler knew the Tides’ offense was ready for an outburst, and he got it Friday night.
The Tides (2-1 overall) scored early and often, answering the fans’ cheer of “Roll Tides” multiple times during their 49-28 win over the South Kitsap Wolves at Roy Anderson Field.
Quarterback Conor Scanlan finished 8-for-15 passing and accounted for four touchdowns, including scoring tosses to Santana Johnson and Cody Alcott. Scanlan also racked up 71 rushing yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Cody Alcott hauled in touchdown receptions from two different quarterbacks. Sterling Brown rushed for 104 yards on 16 carries and added two scores.
“We’ve just focused on execution the last couple weeks,” Chantler said. “We knew the last couple the games, we thought we’ve been putting some good things together, especially last week against Peninsula. We thought we were really close to busting out for one of these nights.”
Chantler said the team jokes about looking like Oregon, mimicking the ultra-fast, dizzying pace the Ducks showcase on Saturdays.
“We scored 14 points in a minute and 58 seconds, and then we have 21 points in the first five minutes — we accomplished our goal,” Chantler said. “We ran 68, 70 plays tonight — that’s our goal. We missed on some things last week against Peninsula that we thought we could’ve turned in to bigger runs, and this week we hit on some early on.
“Obviously, we came on pretty strong offensively tonight.”
While Gig Harbor pulled away, its defense struggled in the first half. The Tides led 35-20 as the teams went into the locker room.
Gig Harbor stopped South Kitsap’s running game and gave up just eight points the rest of the way.
“We talked to the kids just about settling down,” Chantler said. “We’ve fought for a year just getting them to believe in themselves. I think it took a half to realize, ‘Hey, guys, we’re fine, just play the game. Read your keys.’ When we got to the ball carrier, we were able to make tackles, but we were just struggling reading our keys. That was kind of the struggle in the first half.
“Defense is animalistic — see the ball, get the ball,” he said. “At the very smallest bit, just do that. I think that helped in the second half.”
The Tides will travel to Silverdale to play Central Kitsap on Friday night.