To say the Lincoln Abes gritted out the team’s 41-14 victory over the Central Kitsap Cougars on Friday night at Lincoln Bowl sounds silly. But for an undefeated team averaging 59 points a game, that’s certainly how it felt.
While it was a resounding win for coach Jon Kitna’s Lincoln team — 7-0 overall, ranked seventh in The News Tribune’s Class 3A rankings entering the game and already in control of the 3A Narrows League at 5-0 — there were at least a few moments of worry for the team midway through the second quarter, when quarterback Jordan Kitna went down with a ankle injury after a sack.
While Kitna — who entered the game third in the state in passing yards and first in passing touchdowns with 32 — missed only one play on offense as a result of the injury, the ankle required constant attention on the sideline and visibly bothered the passer all night.
“He’s got a tough mom, so he comes from tough genes,” the elder Kitna said of his son after the victory. “I thought he did a good job in the second half of bouncing back of really dealing with the pain.”
Jordan Kitna finished 22-for-36 passing, with 367 yards, five touchdowns and one interception. But perhaps most important for the Abes, his dad said team trainers do not believe the injury — which occurred when a defender rolled him up awkwardly during a sack — is a high-ankle sprain.
“We’ll see. He’s going to feel pretty bad tomorrow, but he’s got a couple days to kind of get it right,” coach Kitna said.
The injury wasn’t the only speed bump for the Abes on Friday night. A lack of discipline and focus also seemed to plague the team, resulting in Lincoln’s closest contest since a 32-10 victory over Capital on Sept. 19.
“In the first half, we didn’t really match their intensity,” Jon Kitna said. “We’re going to play better football teams as the season progresses, and we can’t have a dip in our effort level.”
Junior running back Dionte Simon led the Abes in receiving, hauling in seven catches for 131 yards and two touchdowns, including a 62-yard TD.
Central Kitsap fell to 3-4 overall, 3-2 Narrows.