By Jeremy McDonald
STAYTON, Ore.–With summer winding down and Fall practice gearing up, the Stayton High School Football team are finding their groove with their new Head Coach in Randy Nyquist in time to prepare for the season to come ahead.
“I think it came real easy, coach is real patient and it’s just reps, reps, reps and that’s what we did and we did it throughout the summer,” said Tony Schoenborn. “People were locked in as soon as we started practice and the guys that were there. Like coach said today, we’re going to be a few weeks ahead of him so I think the focus was good.”
And as the first day wrapped up on a sunny, hazy day in Stayton, the feelings was the same as how the summer went. (South Albany, Thurston)
“I think it really good, I think one of my best first practices I’ve ever had. There was quite a bit of energy, which is good to see you know,” Schoenborn said. “Usually it’s pretty awkward with guys not being out here in the summer so they don’t know how things go, especially with a new coach. But I think today went real well…everyone was locked in and it felt natural.”
With the skills position that involves Schoenborn at Tight End, Jerry Daniels at running back and Aidan Hill at quarterback leading the way; both Daniels and offensive and defensive lineman Isaiah Sunghera both know how important the chain of command is from line to the skill positions.
“It really puts a chip on our shoulders and it just keeps us working hard everyday,” said Sunghera. “Because we can see the motto, ‘No line, no shine’ for a little bit and it showed, we didn’t shine all that much but we got that new coach in here, new lineman coach in here showing us some really good stuff and really is showing us the way it seems.
“It really puts a chip on our shoulders to get these guys the yards they deserve and the big plays they deserve.”
For Daniels, he’s too confident that his line can help get him and the rest of the skills core to be successful as they all know that they can be.
“I’m really confident, we got a good set in and I think kids are going to show up,” said Daniels on the line”As long as my line is good, then we’re going to be fine. As long as my lineman are happy, everything else is going to go smoothly.”
With seniors on the team like a a Schoenborn, a Sungerha or a Daniels, it’s important for them to leave a mark for future Eagles to leave their marks once they leave and Nyquist continues his coaching tenure at Stayton High.
With numbers dwindling in the State of Oregon, some 900 students not coming out for football said Sungerha, it’s important for those who are playing to continue teaching the game the right way. Either through techinques or by leadership.
“It really means a lot to leave a lasting impression here,” said Sunghera. “That’s what we need to start. We need to start the tradition for coaches to carry it through and it sounds like it only going up from here.”
“I think all the seniors are going to leave a good impression on these kids,” adds Daniels. “I’m going to try to stay positive and keep a smile on everybody. When other team’s join this team, they’re going to be like, ‘oh it’s not a negative, it’s a positive, fun building family thing’.”
And with the jamboree next week in Lebanon against teams like South Albany and Thurston, it’s going to be crucial for the Eagles to continue to build on this foundation and use the jamboree as a leaping board for their September 1 game versus Estacada at home.
“I think it’s going to be a really crucial one for us to stay locked in, as practices go one things should get a little more laid back, people drop first day habits,” said Schoenborn. “But I think it’s going to be important to keep those habits and winners mentality all the way through the season and the jamboree is going to help reveal where we’re at in that step.”
Photos By Jeremy McDonald