By Jeremy McDonald
BAKER CITY, Ore.–For Central-grad Brayden Foreman, Saturday night was a long-time coming after having to end his High School prep career on short noticed due to a torn labrum.
Having moved down to guard for the East-West Shrine Game in the first year that 5A has joined the traditionally 1A-4A All-Star Game at Baker High School, Foreman and the offensive line set up promising drives against a strong East team. The West team won 17-14 in overtime off a Woodburn’s Santi Roque-Manzo field goal attempt from 25-yards out, Foreman was blocking on that play that won the game for the West.
“It feels great. I feel like these guys are my teammates and it sucks that I won’t play with them anymore. But it was fun, it was a good experience,” said Foreman.
The week leading up to the Shrine Game was a good taste of college life for Foreman as he heads to Pacific University on Wednesday, having spent the week at Eastern Oregon University in the dorms with his West teammates with a taste of dorm banter that comes with it.
But for Foreman, getting to this point was hard work and a lot of patience.
Having torn his labrum in his right shoulder days before his senior season of football with the Panthers, Foreman battled through the pain as he played that carried over to the little bit of the senior basketball season that he had before having to go in for surgery. The surgery knocked Foreman out of the rest of basketball and the baseball seasons as he waited his turn to return to the field of play.
“It was tough. Through football season, I would dislocate my shoulder three, four times a game. I would play through it and in basketball, it was still as painful,” Foreman starts. “I had the surgery because I wanted to play college football and I had to do it in order to get cleared in time. So I did what I had to do, couldn’t play baseball but I was there and it was fun.”
As soon as he was cleared to go in June, Foreman immediately went to work. Setting his sights on Pacific and the Shrine Game. Doing all the offseason stuff to make sure he was ready to go when it was time to pop the pads.
“I’m probably twice as strong as I was before. I was out grind, lifting, running, hitting the sleds. Getting ready for Pacific and getting ready for the Shrine Game,” Foreman said.
Foreman didn’t really come off the field when the West team was on offense. But the opportunity to pull and hit someone, testing the shoulder out on every drive, was a nice change of pace from playing offensive tackle as the West team picked up their first All-Star win since 2019. And as Foreman now turns his focus to the Boxers, Pacific opens the season September 3 at Chapman University before hosting Pomona-Pitzer September 17 for their home-opener, he was happy with his performance and being able to represent Central High School in Baker City.
“It feels great to come here to represent Central and do my thing,” Foreman said.