By Jeremy McDonald
SALEM, Ore.– If you saw on paper, you’ll definitely saw improvement between 2015 and 2016 for the Gervais Cougars.
Zero wins in 2015, two in 2016. Most people would call that a nice improvement all in itself.
But there’s more to it.
There were more consistently in numbers everyday, which translated into game day.
Game one, versus Sheridan, they rallied from a 19-6 deficit to bring it within one score in the waning seconds of the game before beating Portland Christian for their first win in 701 days, two years almost and giving Head Coach Josh Crawford his first ever Varsity win.
They competed versus Salem Academy and Scio, scored the most points by a Gervais team in years versus Chemawa.
They had a huge comeback versus Jefferson in which they rally from a 21-7 deficit with 5:30 to go in the third quarter to take a, though brief, 25-21 lead at the 7:15 mark of the final frame in their 27-25 loss.
They had teams like the Crusaders and Loggers talking about the improved Cougars and not the bad Gervais.
Though their record said that they were 2-7 and 1-5 in the PacWest Conference, they’ve improved more than just on paper.
“Well we taught that no quit attitude that we have focused on all season,” said Peter McKinley. “Against Sheridan we could have folded at the half but we came back and made it a game. Jefferson where down 21-7 and just gave up a safety but we battled back and lost by two.
“We fought and as a senior and player on this team that’s all I could ask for. I love the improvement we saw and had this year and I look forward to having them improve more and more next year and the year after. I’m glad to call this group of guys my brothers.”
The good side to the Cougars for 2017 is that they’re only losing six seniors from this years squad and are returning 2016’s young nucleus for next year.
Things are looking for the good for the Upstart Gervais Cougars.
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Few Pictures From Warm-Ups (Pictures by Jeremy McDonald)