The Wahkiakum County Eagle - Established as The Skamokawa Eagle in 1891

Lots to see Saturday in football doubleheader

East versus West in 2 games


August 30, 2018

By Rick Nelson

The Wahkiakum Mule football team begins the 2018 season with one of its largest rosters in years.

Even with 31 players on the squad as of Monday, this year's team is a mixture of youth and experience.

"We have 31 kids turning out of which 10 are upperclassmen," Mule Coach Erick Hansen said Monday. "Of those, eight are football players (two are foreign exchange students). There are 21 freshmen and sophomores.

"I'm cautiously optimistic."

The Mules had five seniors on last year's roster, including two exchange students just learning American football. So with three starters just gone from last year's roster, the Mules largest squad in years has some experience.

"Our offensive backfield is good; our offensive line is a work in progress," Hansen said.

Lucas Brown is back at quarterback for another year, this time as a senior. Running backs James Anderson and Chance Cothren piled up yardage last year. The receiver corps includes Cothren, Chase Heagy, Kaden Anderson, and tight end KC Beery.

The offensive line is a mix, Hansen said, but a good mix with seven players competing for positions. These include Evan Quigley, Alex Merrill, Ashden Niemeyer, Tristan Collupy brothers Isaac and Eli Moon, Ben Carlson and Randall Ecklund.

The defense will be fluid, switching between three- and four-man front lines, with many of the offensive linemen filling the spots on the line and at linebacker. James Anderson will anchor the backer corps, and Kayden Anderson, Cothren, Heagy and Brown will play defensive backs.

The Mules' 1 p.m. start Saturday against the Colfax Bulldogs will be part of a treat for fans of Class B-11 football, or any division for that matter.

They'll follow a 10 a.m. game between the Napavine Tigers and Liberty Lancers. Colfax, Napavine and Liberty have appeared in plenty of B-11 playoff games in the past few years.

"I'm really excited to have these teams here, and I'm glad people have the opportunity to see east side teams play teams from the west side. It will be a good time for people to see some good football.

After that, the Mules start play in the Central League.

In the Mules' River Division of the league, "Kalama is still the big dog," Hansen said, "and Toledo will be really strong. Toutle Lake and Mossyrock have new coaches.

"The Mountain Division looks tough top to bottom with Rainier, Onalaska, Adna, Napavine and Morton/White Pass."

Top teams in each division will play cross over games at the beginning of November for berths in the state playoffs.

This year, for the first time, a group will seed teams into the state playoffs, Hansen said. "They really want the semifinals to have the top teams in the state."


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