Huskers upset OK Sun

The streak had to end sometime.

Sometime was Saturday.

The Valley Huskers beat the Okanagan Sun on the field for the first time in their history, 22-18. Their only other win in 35 previous starts was a forfeited victory in 2013 when the Sun dressed an ineligible player.

The win Saturday wasn't a classic by any stretch, but the Huskers, who move into top spot in the BCFC after three weeks, will surely take it.

The Huskers grabbed a 14-0 lead in the opening quarter, then let their defence take it home the rest of the way as the Sun found themselves with good field position for most of the final three quarters but were unable to get untracked under the guidance of rookie quarterback Matthew Mahler.

Chilliwack pivot Julian Wytinck tossed a touchdown pass of 26 yards and ran one in from a yard out to give the Huskers that early lead.

The Sun had a chance to get on the board early in the second quarter, but a bad snap on a 23-yard field goal attempt negated that scoring drive.

Moments later, the Sun recovered a muffed punt at the Huskers 13, and two plays later, Jesse Amankwaa ran in from 10-yards out to cut the deficit in half.

After a bad punt put the Sun at the Huskers 34, Amankwaa again broke free, but after hurdling a Husker defender, Desmond Jeanson threw a big hit, causing the ball to come loose. The Huskers recovered in the end zone to snuff out another promising drive.

Midway through the third, after a missed field goal put the Huskers up 15-7, Simon Winsnes stepped in front of an intended receiver and returned an interception 50 yards for another major to put the Huskers up 22-14.

Late in the quarter, after a Sun single on a conceded punt in the end zone, Tye Kitzman appeared to block a punt that Javen Kaechle scooped up and scampered 25-yards to again cut the deficit to seven.

The Sun had chances in the final quarter. With three minutes to go, Isaac Wegner recovered his own punt giving the Sun the ball at the 46.

They got the ball to the 23, but Mahler was unable to connect on a third and three.

With just over a minute to go, the Sun again moved the ball deep into the Huskers end but, again on third down, Mahler was unable to connect and the Huskers ran out the clock.

Mahler started Saturday in place of starter Jakob Loucks, who sat out with an upper body injury.

Loucks may be ready to go next weekend when the Sun travel to Langley to face the 1-2 Rams.

The loss dropped the Sun record to 1-1-1, while the Huskers improved to 2-1.

In other action Saturday, the VI Raiders scored on their final four possessions to edge the Langley Rams 35-34. The other game in Kamloops between the Broncos and Westshore Rebels was postponed due to smoky skies.

That game will be made up at a later date.


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