By Jeremy McDonald
BAKER CITY, Ore.– St. Paul’s Justin Herberger entered his third All-Star Game this summer with the 1A-4A Shrine Game at Baker High School Saturday night. The athlete known as Herbie had already played in the 8-Man All-Star Game and the Small School Baseball All-Star Game entering his final prep game before starting Linfield later this month.
There was no fatigue with it. It’s an opportunity to compete with new people on any given day.
“Not really, it’s always a group of guys…I make new friends every single time I come and it’s always a pleasure playing with a ton of them, it hasn’t got old yet,” smile Herberger, who rushed for 36 yards on six carries. “It’s a lot of time away from the house, but you never get old playing the game and playing with good guys.”
Herberger was named a captain, an opportunity that presented itself when they needed someone from each position group to go out for the coin flip.
“The guys were like, ‘yeah Herbie go out there’ and I thought it was pretty cool that they let me do that, but it was awesome,” said Herberger.
Cascade’s Macoy Christman was also a captain as he recorded 1.5 tackles in the 43-10 West team win. But Christman’s teammate, Jacob Whisman, was flying around to help lead 30-0 by the halftime break as they shared this experience together.
“It’s awesome. In a week, all these guys that we played against and guys we’ve played with…it takes a week and we’re all brothers. It’s a cool feeling of football like no other,” said Whisman, who had two interceptions and six tackles in the win. “Me and Macoy have been best friends our whole life and that’s really cool.”
Whisman and Christman’s former rival in Stayton’s Sean Bodi, a Western Oregon University football-commit, led the offensive charge with four catches for 92 yards and a touchdown
“It was definitely tough, there’s a lot of great players on both teams and I was just putting my heart out there, playing my hardest to give the team a chance,” said Bodi, who’s first catch for 42 yards led to the West’s first score of the contest Saturday.
Jefferson’s Jayden Eriksen, who wrapped up his playing career at defensive end, mentioned entering the contest about the talent on the field as the Lions-grad used his six-five frame for 3.5 tackles in the game.
“Mostly with us, we were cool and composed. Coach was calling us the ‘Quiet Assassins’, we were focusing on our main dude, doing our jobs and trying to get the job done,” said Eriksen. “It’s definitely a great experience to end the year really good. Love for the kids, love for all the players. It’s really good.”
Leaving on a good note, one of the benefits of the All-Star game to go out on your terms in a fun atmosphere. Amity’s Robby Scharf mentioned, as he moves into coaching, that walking off the field Saturday had a better taste to it then how the Warriors season ended against Cascade Christian last season.
Dayton’s Noah White, Fall City’s Austin Burgess and Stayton’s Garrett Sandefur participated in the All-Star Game.
“Like I told someone before the game, expect for five guys on the roster we’ve all ended our High School careers in ways that we didn’t want to,” said Scharf. “And it felt a f(expletive) ton better to go out like this then against CC. I’m not wearing a ring on my finger, but this a good substitute for that.”
And as the East tried to claw back into the game, the West had two goalline stands. One of them saw Santiam’s Trevor Tinney involved with two of the stops on the first stand with the mullet and all during the third quarter.
“That was probably one of the biggest things I’m going to remember about my football career is the goal line stand on the two-yard line and stuffing them for a no gain,” said Tinney, who finished with 6.5 tackles and 1.5 sacks. “That was probably one of the most incredible things I’ve experienced with a football team.”
The East did eventually get on the board with a safety and a touchdown with a two-point conversion in the second half, but that’s all she wrote for the game in Eastern Oregon.
As for the mullet, which came up during the week, it’s going to be gone Sunday for Tinney.
“Oh I’m shaving it off, a hundred percent gone on Sunday. Tomorrow, no,” said Tinney of the mullet.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald