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Originally published September 2, 2011 at 11:14 PM | Page modified September 2, 2011 at 11:50 PM

Bothell rallies from early hole, beats Union, 27-10

Bothell scored 27 unanswered points to beat No. 9 Union of Vancouver 27-10 Friday night before a blue-clad crowd of frenzied Bothell fans at Pop Keeney Stadium.

Special to The Seattle Times

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BOTHELL — As would be expected in his first game as Bothell's starting quarterback, Austen Dahl was going through a case of the jitters.

In Bothell's first two offensive series, Dahl threw an incompletion, was sacked hard and tossed an interception right into the hands of a defender. On Bothell's next series, his passes were all over the place with another almost picked off.

The next thing Dahl knew, Bothell was staring at a 10-0 deficit.

"He was nervous," Bothell coach Tom Bainter said. "He started last year at safety, but quarterback's a different deal."

Much to Bainter's delight, Dahl proved to be resilient. He teamed up with fellow senior Trent Sewell for completions seven times, twice for touchdowns, as 10th-ranked Bothell scored 27 unanswered points to beat No. 9 Union of Vancouver 27-10 Friday night before a blue-clad crowd of frenzied Bothell fans at Pop Keeney Stadium.

Dahl had to watch last season while senior Braden Foley ran Bothell's offense. Foley led the Cougars into the Class 4A state quarterfinals.

"It's great to be back out on the field playing with all my brothers on my team," said Dahl, shortly after scaling a fence and jumping into a sea of Bothell fans wearing face paint, shredded jerseys and an assortment of hats and crowns.

Bothell, a perennial KingCo power, committed four turnovers and missed a field goal. Dahl was intercepted twice but completed 11 of 18 passes for 165 yards and two touchdowns. At one point, he completed eight in a row.

Sewell, one of the state's most-recruited receivers, caught seven passes for 141 yards.

Trailing 10-0, Bothell's fortunes turned after a strange series of events in the second quarter. Nick Anthony broke a 39-yard run but fumbled at the Union 1-yard line. One play later, Bothell defenders tackled Union's Brandon Brody-Heim in the end zone for a safety.

After getting the ball back on a free kick, Bothell scored on Dahl's well-thrown 22-yard touchdown pass in the corner of the end zone to Sewell. Dahl seemed to relax after that touchdown.

"We're inexperienced and we're young," Bainter said. "We knew it could take us a while to get going. We told our senior leaders that we need to be resilient and positive and kind of weather a nervousness, if you will, and I thought we did that well.

"We almost broke a big touchdown and we fumbled at the 1-inch line but we come right back and got a safety and that was huge. I'm just really pleased at the way we never quit."

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