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Youth Serves Seahawks Well

November 25, 2002|From Associated Press

SEATTLE — The young Seattle Seahawks realize they'll make plenty of mistakes. Matt Hasselbeck and Orlando Huff showed they're also learning how to get it right.

Hasselbeck had his best performance of the season, throwing for career highs with 362 yards and three touchdowns and Huff made a big defensive player as the Seahawks beat the Kansas City Chiefs, 39-32, on Sunday.

Hasselbeck completed 25 of 36 passes without an interception.

"I'm comfortable, and I guess that's part of the maturing process," said Hasselbeck, in his second season as a starter in the NFL. "Part of it is that our young guys are really playing well. I'm going to have a better day if those guys improve."

Shaun Alexander ran for 145 yards in 23 carries and provided breathing room for Seattle (4-7) when he ran for a 46-yard touchdown on a counter play that made it 39-25 with 1:52 remaining.

"This is the most positive team I've ever been on," said Alexander, in his third NFL season. "Every week, everyone feels like this is going to be the week that we play like Super Bowl champions."

Kansas City's Priest Holmes ran for 197 yards and two touchdowns in 23 carries and caught seven passes for 110 yards, including a screen pass from Green that went for a 64-yard touchdown and a 17-7 lead midway through the second quarter.

The Chiefs (5-6) pulled to 39-32 in the final minute when Trent Green threw a 15-yard scoring pass to Marc Boerigter with 31 seconds to play, but Seattle's Bobby Engram recovered the ensuing onside kick.

"I've never been involved in a game where a running back had nearly 200 yards running but we still wound up minus-one in the turnovers," Chief Coach Dick Vermeil said. "And that was a huge turnover."

Credit Huff, a second-year linebacker, for that one. He intercepted a pass by Green after the Chiefs reached the Seattle one just before the half. Huff made an athletic play, shuffling his feet to stay inbounds with the Seahawks trailing 17-14.

"I knew I had my hands on the ball, so it was just a matter of getting my feet down," said Huff. "I thought I had it, but I knew I had it after I looked up and saw the replay."

The officials needed another look too. They initially ruled Huff didn't have possession but the play was overturned after a review when Seattle challenged the decision.

"We could have gone up 24-14 and it would have been a different game," Green said. "All of a sudden, we gave them a lift."

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