By Jeremy McDonald
SALEM, Ore.– They had to battle and fight their way back into the game down nearly ten to West Salem Thursday night in their second scrimmage at McKay High School.
Slowly, McNary turned their 10-1 deficit into something good as they came back to defeat the Titans before carrying over the momentum to their third scrimmage of the Salem-Keizer jamboree with McKay
“I think it was our momentum and our energy that came and pushed us,” said Maddox Snider following the win over the Scots in their third game of the night. “We were down from 1-10. We saw that and we all had that mentality that we had to keep going on and we did it.
“After what happened last game (versus West Salem) we just carried on to this game and we’re going to carry it on forward.”43
For a squad looking to rebound after a 5-17 season last year in a league that featured two teams that went to the Elite 8, they stepped up to the challenge in front of them Thursday night as they rose to the challenge once more against South.
Faced with fatigue and faced with a 19-12 deficit to the Saxons, the Celtics rose to the challenge in front of them as they slowly began to chip away at the South Salem lead. Eventually, with momentum and excitement building similar to their scrimmage with West Salem, McNary got to within one of the Saxons at 22-21.
“It’s a good feeling to know that your teammates have your back and they showed that we weren’t going to stop fighting at all this year,” said Taylor Ebbs. “Even from the start we’re going to keep fighting for it all and I like to see that.”
The Saxons pushed the lead to 23-21 soon after before the Celts got the game back to within one and were within a long rally of tying the game at 23 before South Salem shut the door on McNary’s rally to close out the Salem-Keizer jamboree.
And as they wrapped up the first two weeks entering their Mountain Valley Conference league and season opener at Mountain View in Bend, the work they’ve already put in entering the first official game week of the season has been the foundation laying for the season to come.
“I think if we continue improving in practice and having fun and keep working hard as we did in the last couple of practices, we’re going to do great for the season,” smiled Snider.