By Jeremy McDonald
GERVAIS, Ore.– February.
That’s when the Boys of Fall at Gervais High School started all of their hard work and sacrifice in preparation for the 2017-2018 season.
Roughly in the weight room program and summer training that stretched into this week. Head Coach Josh Crawford knew the feeling of 0-9 from his first season in 2015, knowing plays here and there, even quarters, could’ve put the Cougars of GTown into favorable territory of that ‘playoff’-word in 2016.
The third-year coach knew too, that his boys deserved some fun before all of their hardwork and sacrifice will pay off in 72 hours from Thursday when they walk out to the first official practice of the season Monday afternoon.
“It was good, we have been going since February to be honest in the weight room, out on the field running drills, conditioning drills with 15 to 20 kids since February,” said Crawford. “And we didn’t have any fun days, so to see them have fun, joke…clowning on each other a bit, it’s fun.
“For me it’s fun to watch them…I’m excited…I’m excited to go, there’s a little bit of a buzz going around with registration, all the parents coming in talking about football. So it’s good, I’m ready to go.”
And talk around the school, from administrators even, Crawford said to the team at the end of practice, were taking noticed because of the Camps, the 7-on-7’s, the weight’s program; things nearly unaccustomed at Gervais as they prep on a most unique situation with a very skillful skills core and a junior/senior core on the line.
With Friday’s summer finale, there was something fun about taking the gas off the throttle and enjoyed some dodgeball, flag football and Cougar in the Field.
“It was fun, I loved it. Espcially with the team, getting to know each other better,” said Chazz Fobert. “And it’s been a lot of fun, a lot more than last year because we’re all here, we’re all working together now. We’re all having fun together.
That teamwork just took another level with this fun day said Fobert and adds Nate Corpuz.
“I think it’s very important to grow closer to your teammates than anyone else because that’s who your out with Friday night,” said Fobert. “That’s who you put your blood, sweat and tears with…your teammates, it’s family.”
“It was really fun because we get to play as a team, like play different games, like be closer to each other,” adds Corpuz on the bond Friday helped build further.
The coaches too took part in the festivites like Dodgeball with their players to build that bond even further between coach and player, that trust like the players have with one another.
Even Crawford came out of retirement and showcased his arm strength despite his age, and Crawford was confident though Father Time may peak his head around Friday morning.
“My arm’s good, I’m not worry about me,” laughed and smiled Crawford after his performance.
But, Ol’ Southpaw Corpuz had other words about his coach when it comes to the cannon that his Head Coach had.
“Um, he could make better reads,” said Corpuz with a smile on his face about the few miscues that Crawford made in throwing the rock.
But regardless if Crawford is throwing it around in practice or Corpuz come Friday Night’s, we’re just weeks away from Cougars-Sheridan on September 1 in Gervais.