In its second football game in approximately three years, the Tulalip Heritage Hawks put up a competitive effort against Lummi Nation, but came up short. During a game at the Tulalip Tribes Sports Complex, April 22, the Hawks lost to the Blackhawks 48-40 in an eight-person football game.
“We went back and forth with Lummi. It was a pretty good battle,” Hawks head coach Martin Napeahi said.
The Tulalip Heritage Hawks fielded its first football team since 2018 with Napeahi starting as coach before the season began. “A lot of the kids have never played before.”
Lummi Nation scored first during the opening quarter with a touchdown run. The Hawks responded when quarterback Anthony Power scored a touchdown from around 38 yards.
Lummi closed out the quarter with an approximately 50-yard touchdown run to go up 14-6 before both teams traded turnovers at the end of the first.
The Hawks scored early in the second quarter when running back Tommy Gilbert ran for the touchdown of approximately 45 yards.
The two teams continued trading touchdowns in the second quarter with Lummi Nation scoring two more touchdowns and Tulalip Heritage scoring one, which was a pass from Power to Tarynn Fryberg. Score at halftime was Lummi Nation leading 28-20.
The third quarter continued seeing the two teams scoring. Tulalip Heritage tied the score at 34 each with touchdown run by Gilbert and a pass from Power to Gilbert.
In the fourth quarter, Lummi Nation pulled ahead with two touchdown runs. The Hawks brought the margin to eight points when Gilbert returned a kickoff for a touchdown.
“These kids really rose up to the challenge this week,” Napeahi said.
Gilbert rushed for 152 yards, caught for another 54 yards and 108 yards on kickoff returns. He rushed for two touchdowns, caught another touchdown and ran one kickoff return for a touchdown.
Power rushed for 130 yards, passed for 103 yards, had one rushing touchdown and two passing touchdowns.
Linebacker Juan Vaga-Hernandez had 12 tackles, one tackle for a loss, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery. Napeahi also complemented the efforts of both the offensive and defensive lines, as well as the game of Tarynn Fryberg.
Tulalip Heritage last fielded a football team in 2018. He said the Hawks had four weeks of conditioning and two weeks of practice before the Hawks faced the Darrington Loggers April 10. Tulalip Heritage lost 54-0.
“This was a huge contrast between the two games,” Napeahi said of the first part of the season. The Hawks had two weeks to prepare for Lummi Nation and fielded nine players for the eight-person matchup.
Tulalip Heritage travels to Neah Bay April 28 and the Hawks concludes its football season May 4 when Concrete High School travels to Tulalip.
To watch a replay of the April 22 game, go to the Tulalip News’s Facebook page.