Varsity Football: Slow Start to League Champs

Walker Steele, Contributor

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The West Valley varsity football team started the season off against Foothill.  During the off season they prepared for this game by team bonding/joining together as a brotherhood.  So Coach Greg Grandell took the team to Lake Siskiyou where they did drills running, hitting etc… When they played Foothill, they were not ready and they were winning at half, but just collapsed after the first half.  They ended up losing the game by 1 point 21-20.

So it was a bad start for the Eagles season.  After that, they prepared for Enterprise.  They started out strong and led at the half 27-7, but at the end of the game lost 27-28 and the team just fell apart.  They had people quit, others got removed from the team because of drug use.  The following week, they played Eureka (a big school from the coast).  Once again, we were winning at half-time and in the 4th quarter had a touchdown called back that would have given them the lead.  We wound up losing 28-38.  They lost every game of the preseason.

However, things started to change for the better when they started to get their heads in the game.  On the way to Yreka, everyone on the varsity team was locked in because this was the first league game. They arrived to the occasion in the first quarter, just blew them out 21-0 and ended up winning 32-12.  Bailey Sultzer said “This was a big win for us and it really helped us to other wins.” Next up they had Red Bluff at Shasta College.  They won that game 22-20.  It was a very close game and was very nerve-racking to watch.  The rest of the year for them was a breeze and they just blew everyone out, including Anderson 40-0, to win the Northern Athletic League. 

The winning streak ended, unfortunately, in the North Section Semi-Final game against the Cubs.  In this game, we faced our rivals.  This game was neck and neck the whole time but the Eagles were down by 10 at one point and made a huge come back, but still ended up losing by 3 points and couldn’t quite get over the hump.  Coach Grandell said, “My team got their heads too big.  Remember, it’s hard to beat a team twice.”

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