2A GSHL: A battle royal

An introduction to our high school football team previews for the Class 2A Greater St. Helens League

A lot of quality teams trying to go after champion Hockinson

Paul Valencia
Paul Valencia

Paul Valencia
ClarkCountyToday.com

The Hockinson Hawks have won three consecutive Class 2A Greater St. Helens League titles. The first two were relatively easy. Not last year, though.

Heading into 2017, even if the Hawks have improved — and they have — so, too, have a number of other teams.

The 2A GSHL is on the rise.

Optimism among Class 2A Greater St. Helens League football teams are sky high in 2017. Photo by Mike Schultz
Optimism among Class 2A Greater St. Helens League football teams are sky high in 2017. Photo by Mike Schultz

In 2016, five of the seven teams finished at .500 or better in the league schedule. A case can be made that all five are better this season.

The league does catch a break with the postseason, though. Last year, only three teams made the Week 10 playoffs. This season, four will go.

North of Clark County, R.A. Long and Mark Morris are looking to rebound from a tough 2016. R.A. Long had made the playoffs the previous three seasons. Mark Morris, not that long ago, was a state quarterfinalist.

As far as the Clark County squads (and yes, we count Woodland as Clark County. Close enough, right?) here are some of the storylines heading into 2017:

  • Columbia River, led by defensive player of the year Koben Jamison, expects to have a special defense in coach Christian Swain’s second season with the Chieftains.
  • The Racanelli brothers, Canon and Sawyer, look for more yards, touchdowns, and wins in their final season together at Hockinson.
  • Brock Harrison toured numerous football camps this summer in an effort to get better than he already is for the Ridgefield Spudders.
  • The Washougal Panthers believe they have the school’s best team in decades because of an experienced offensive line.
  • Woodland’s Wyatt Harsh hopes to celebrate his fourth year as a starting quarterback by returning to the postseason for the first time since he was a freshman. And he’s got help, with all-everything athlete Tyler Flanagan.

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About The Author

Paul Valencia joins ClarkCountyToday.com after more than two decades of newspaper experience. He became the face of high school sports coverage in Clark County during his 17 years at The Columbian. Before moving to Vancouver, Paul worked at Oregon daily newspapers in Pendleton, Roseburg, and Salem. A graduate of David Douglas High School in Portland, Paul enlisted in the U.S. Army, serving three years as a soldier/journalist. He and his wife Jenny recently celebrated their 20th anniversary. They have a son who has a passion for karate and Minecraft. Paul’s hobbies include: Watching the Raiders play football, reading about the Raiders playing football, and waiting to watch and read about the Raiders playing football.

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