By Jeremy McDonald
SILVERTON, Ore.– Not a lot of teams get to this point to practice on Thanksgiving. But here they were, Silverton and Kennedy living the dream of having a Turkey Day practice.
The focus was there with the Title Bouts for both teams on the horizon Saturday afternoon, the Foxes with Thurston and the Trojans with Coquille Thursday morning.
Silverton had the breakfast practice, going from 8am to 930 in the last padded practice of the year. Kennedy followed with a 90-minute practice of their own.
“It’s a lot of fun. It’s an extra day because we normally play on Friday, but it was fun to come out here Thanksgiving morning. 8am and put some work in and go home to celebrate with our families,” said the Foxes Carson Waples.
“It awesome. It comes around once a year, just to come out here and practice. It’s what we wanted from the start,” adds the Trojans Andrew Cuff.
This is Kennedy’s third Thanksgiving practice in four years and the Foxes first since 2014. Silverton Head Coach Josh Craig pointed towards the last time the Foxes had one of these practices, their field was grass and it was a giant mud pit. Craig had his brother come out at the end of their practice and if he could hit the crossbar the team would get out of end-of-practice conditioning.
It took two tries, but the sibling came through in the clutch to give the squad an early exit into the holiday.
“Oh, it’s pretty exciting. The guys are in really high spirits. We had a practice last night and we started practice at eight, so it was a quick turnaround. But they were ready from the start. It was a great mix of getting stuff done while having fun,” said Josh Craig.
All-in-all though, it’s a fun time to practice. Each team had their own special Thanksgiving treats at the end of practice. Kennedy with donuts and the Foxes had a small Thanksgiving spread of smoked Turkey, rolls, chips and pie.
“Nothing feels better than practicing on Thanksgiving and getting ready to play for a State Championship. It’s something we’ve worked for all season and for it to finally come together, it feels really good,” said the Trojans Matt Hopkins.
Friday will be the final preparations for Saturday’s big games. Both State Title games are at 3pm, Silverton up at Hillsboro Stadium and Kennedy down at Cottage Grove High School on Saturday.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald