As up and down a year as it’s been for the Lynden High football team — having its 33-game win streak snapped to a sub-.500 Ferndale team combined with down-to-the-wire fourth-quarter victories — they seem to turn the page when the postseason starts.
The Lions (12-1) are seeking their fourth consecutive Class 2A state title when they meet Northwest Conference rival Sedro-Woolley (12-1) at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Tacoma Dome, a team they beat 33-30 on Oct. 24.
Still, once the postseason comes, Lynden knows how to win, said Squalicum coach Nick Lucey.
“This is their time of year,” he said.
After an October stretch that included a 37-35 loss to Ferndale and narrow wins over Burlington-Edison, Sedro-Woolley and Blaine, the Lions have outscored their opponents in the state playoffs, 168-62, including a 33-6 semifinal win over Ellensburg.
River Ridge coach Steve Schultz saw what kind of team the Lions are first-hand when his Hawks faced Lynden in the first round of the 2A state playoffs in Bellingham on Nov. 15. Lynden rushed out to a 41-0 lead, enforcing the running-clock rule 2 minutes, 4 seconds into the third quarter in what was a 41-21 victory.
“They’ll probably win a few more (games),” Schultz said matter-of-factly postgame.
Lynden, in fact, has done just that, and in impressive fashion, behind big numbers with its spread offense. Quarterback Sterling Somers, in his first full season, is 173 for 265 for 2,979 passing yards and 35 touchdowns, and also has 592 rushing yards with nine touchdowns. Reigning 2A state player of the year Trent Postma has been slowed by knee and shoulder injuries this year, but leads the team in rushing (831 yards, seven touchdowns) and is second in tackles (120). Six players have scored at least seven touchdowns apiece.
For Dave Ward’s Sedro-Woolley Cubs, it’s the program’s first state final appearance since 1983. Ward has led two other schools to the state finals Oak Harbor (won 3A title in 2006) and Archbishop Murphy (2010-11).