High school football teams hit the field for start of fall practice

Paul Valencia
Paul Valencia

VANCOUVER — The first day of practice remains special.

For the next two weeks, every team is equal in the standings. Every team has a shot to reach its own goal, whether it is to win state or have a winning season, or simply, just to get a win.

Once the games start, then fans will get to see the strengths and the weaknesses. For now, though, everyone is 0-0.

Day 1 symbolizes all the hopes and dreams of a high school football player. Day 1 was Wednesday in the state of Washington. Some teams practiced early. Some teams practiced late. All teams got a chance to believe in the future.

“First day of practice is all about execution and tempo,” Union quarterback Lincoln Victor said Wednesday morning.

The Mountain View Thunder are focused on returning “To the Top” as defending Class 3A Greater St. Helens League champions. Photo by Paul Valencia
The Mountain View Thunder are focused on returning “To the Top” as defending Class 3A Greater St. Helens League champions. Photo by Paul Valencia

He noted that the two things any athlete can control are attitude and effort. The first day has to send a message to everybody: It is time to go to work.

“The energy has to be high. It’s all about what you did in the offseason and applying it right now,” Victor said. “It looks like it’s all coming together.”

In the evening, the Camas Papermakers took the field. More accurately, the defending Class 4A state champion Camas Papermakers took the field.

“We’ve got to set the tone. We’ve got to start quick. There are no days off,” said quarterback Kyle Allen. “We’ve also got to get into the leadership roles. Just have fun and make sure everyone is having fun. It’s good to be back.”

The Evergreen Plainsmen practiced into the night on the first official day of high school football practice. Photo by Paul Valencia
The Evergreen Plainsmen practiced into the night on the first official day of high school football practice. Photo by Paul Valencia

Ryan Rushall noted that the team graduated more than 30 seniors. While this year’s team has been working hard through the offseason program, the first day of practice is another opportunity for the seniors to take charge.

“Coming off a state championship, we have to fill senior leadership,” Rushall said. “Our seniors have got to step it up.”

The Mountain View Thunder practiced until 7 p.m. Wednesday and were scheduled to return in for meetings early Thursday morning.

“I’m just happy to be back,” Jack Mertens said. “Back with the team and ready to play some football. To the top!”

ClarkCountyToday.com is ready for football, too. Look for stories on all 18 of Clark County’s teams beginning next week as we prepare for the 2017 season.

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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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