By Rongi Yost
Correspondent 

JV football wraps up season

 

Last updated 11/15/2022 at Noon

JERRY BALDOCK

Ben Cooper made an outstanding TD catch vs. Thurston in Outlaws junior varsity football action.

The Outlaws JV football squad finished their season with a 3-4 overall record. Twenty-three players were on the roster, and three, including Kayle Mock, Ethan Eby, and Kelvin Parker, saw significant minutes on the varsity squad.

Mock (sophomore), and Eby and Parker (freshmen) were all instrumental players, and according to Defensive Coordinator Jim Gurney will be foundational for the varsity team next year.

Mock played as running back, wide receiver, and at safety. He was explosive when he ran the ball and learned to trust the plays over the course of the season and became a much better player.

Eby played fullback and linebacker. He’s a physical player and dominated play on both sides of the ball. He’s a bruising runner and a punishing tackler.

Parker started on the varsity squad the entire season and then played two quarters on JV. He played as a defensive end and at right tackle and controlled the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball.

Juniors Chance Hamlington and Jayden Vogt, sophomores Cade Lindsey and Wyatt Shockley, and freshman Jozua Miller were on the offensive and defensive line. The whole group was very new to football and improved tremendously over the course of the season. Gurney told The Nugget he thinks they will play a lot next year at the varsity level.

Linebackers included sophomores Carter Van Meter and Colton Middlestetter, Trent Gordon, Tyson Kemp and Cooper Pronold (freshmen). It was the first time any had played at the linebacker position, and coaches saw a dramatic improvement and love for the game as the season progressed.

Junior Triston Madron, and sophomores Dawson Roberson and Joe Souza, along with freshmen Ian Landon, Nick Palmer, and Isaac Dunn were the Outlaws’ wide receivers. Gurney noted that they learned how to run routes, and spent a lot of time selflessly blocking when the other players were running the ball. Gurney added that Roberson shows real promise as a varsity player for next year.

Madron, Roberson, and Souza also played at cornerback, as well as sophomore Kolbi Cotner. They did a great job in run support and learned how to defend the pass. Madron could see significant minutes on varsity next year, and Robertson should also get in some minutes.

Freshmen Hunter Bronson, Reese Moore, Teegan Schwartz, Isaac Dunn, and Souza all saw time at safety. They are good tacklers, and a hard-hitting group.

Cotner and Roberson also played as running backs. They learned how to run the ball, and how to use and set up blocks. They ran outside runs that were key to the Outlaws’ offense. Kemp and Middlestetter also got in minutes on select plays.

Hunter Bronson, a freshman, was the Outlaws’ main quarterback. Gurney stated that Bronson had a strong understanding of the plays, executed run plays well, and improved in his throwing accuracy as the season went on. Gordon occasionally filled in at the quarterback position.

Two big games highlighted the Outlaws’ season: the first, their win against Madras at home. The first time around the Outlaws fell 20-24 to the White Buffs, but when the White Buffs came to Sisters, the Outlaws destroyed them in a final score of 56-7.

Gurney said, “It was the most points a Sisters JV squad has ever scored as far back as I can remember.”

Another bright spot was the JV’s 32-14 win over La?Pine, whose varsity squad were the league champs.

Gurney said, “I can still see the smiles that came clear through the face masks of the guys coming off the field after they had a good run, or a tackle in the backfield for loss. They were just enjoying the game and having success.”

Gurney and Offensive Coordinator Jordan Wilkins commented on the season.

Gurney said, “This was a fantastic group of young men to coach. They played hard and with a lot of passion and enthusiasm and had a ton of growth in their understanding of the game of football. The amount of new players to the program bodes well for the future of Outlaw football.”

Wilkins said, “This was a year of growth and development. It was our first year with a full JV schedule in a long time. We had an up and down season, learning how to prepare our minds to be competitive, and learning the difference between firing out and waiting for someone else to make a play.

“Our team was unselfish and worked hard,” added Wilkins. “They were learners and listeners and we saw an incredible development from start to finish. I am so excited to work with these guys again in the summer and next season to keep Sisters’ football program strong. I’m super proud of the JV squad.”

 

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