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Kings travel to Seward, searching for 1st win
Ketchikan High School senior AJ Malouf (4) catches a hail mary in front of Barrow High School junior Jefferson Nobleza on Aug. 16 at Esther Shea Field. Malouf will be under center on Saturday, in place of injured quarterback Patrick Garcia. Staff photo by Dustin Safranek

Daily News Sports Editor

When the Ketchikan High School Kings (0-2) and Seward High School Seahawks (0-3) leave the gridiron on Saturday afternoon, one of the two teams will have their first win of the season.

The two teams will lock up on the football field at Seward High School at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

It will be the first conference game for both teams, meaning playoff implications are on the line.

Ketchikan enters week four after a pair of games against the previous two ASAA Division III state champions — in Barrow and Ben Eielson high schools — dropping both contests. But the Kings returned to the field after a week two bye, by jumping all over Ben Eielson early in the first half.

The Kings gave the defending state champions a run for their money, despite ultimately falling 48-26.

The Kings’ 26 points were the most tallies Ben Eielson’s defense had allowed since Aug. 11, 2018. And Ben Eielson’s 48 points were the fewest its offense had scored in a regular season game since that season’s very next week, on Aug. 18, 2018.

The outcome against the Ravens might have been different had it not been for an injury to the Kings’ starting quarterback Patrick Garcia.

Garcia left the game in the second half of Ketchikan’s contest against Ben Eielson, and didn’t return to the field.

The Kings’ junior leader is unavailable for the Kings’ game against Seward on Saturday.

In his place, Ketchikan will look to senior AJ Malouf, who has experience under center. He backed up Brendon Wong last season.

Normally a wide receiver and corner back, Malouf will shift to quarterback.

And his time spent under center last season will come in handy on Saturday.

Ketchikan head coach Ryan Varela said his backup quarterback has excellent vision on the field and has the ability to scramble, and make plays happen.

“He’s shifty,” Varela said of Malouf.

Seward enters Saturday’s conference game after three straight losses to Monroe Catholic, Valdez and Redington high schools.

After opening the season with a 44-38 loss to Monroe Catholic, the Seahawks fell to Valdez 32-6 in week two, and 50-14 in week three against Redington.

Valdez (1-2) sits in last place in the Aurora Conference. Both Monroe Catholic and Redington are in the middle of the pack in the Aurora Conference.

Both Ketchikan and Seward sit at the bottom of the Peninsula Conference, along with Nikiski High School (0-2).

All three teams are chasing Houston High School (3-0).

KTKN calls it again

The Kings’ football game against Seward will be broadcast locally on KTKN. The coverage will begin at kickoff, which is scheduled for 2 p.m.

Kings-Seahawks meet

once more

Ketchikan hosted Seward on senior night last season. The Kings won 50-40.

The Kings have four consecutive wins against the Seahawks, dating back to 2014.

In the stretch, Ketchikan has averaged 46.3 points per game against Seward, while allowing just 22 points per game.

Football game gets the OK

There was question as to whether or not the Kings and Seahawks would be able to play on Saturday.

Seward, which sits on the Kenai Peninsula, was under an outdoor activities ban due to the forest fires.

But the air quality was deemed OK to play Saturday’s matinee.

Second of three

Week four is Ketchikan’s second road game of the season, as the Kings traveled to Ben Eielson High School this past weekend.

The Kings only have one more road game of the year after Saturday, and that comes in week seven against Houston.

Ketchikan will host Nikiski in week five, followed by Monroe Catholic in week six.

The Kings will close out the regular season on senior night against Homer High School on Oct. 4.