Wolverine football kicks off 2022 season against Buhl

The Weiser High School football team kicks off the 2022 season against Buhl at home on Friday, Aug. 26. Game time is 7 p.m.
 Although the Wolverines lost players in key roles to graduation, there are plenty stepping up to fill the holes, and most of them have significant game time from the previous season.
 Overall, head coach Tom Harrison said it’s always hard to determine just how good a football team is going into the first game of the season.
 “When you are going against each other, it’s kind of hard to see,” he said. “You try to limit contact as much as possible due to the risk of injury, so it’s hard to tell early on in the season. You can’t simulate live competition. I like our kids, their character and their leadership. They are good guys and I hope they will fight hard for each other, and we’ll just trust the process of getting better with each practice.”
 Harrison said it is important that his team win the first game of the season.
 “You want to start out on a good note, so we are trying to instill in our players that this is one of our goals,” he said.
 Weiser faced Buhl in the state playoffs last year, beating the Indians 62-20 in the first round, knocking them out of the 3A bracket.
 “I’m sure the sting of that game is making them want to play hard and improve on their effort,” Harrison said. “They have more veterans this year. As for our team, we have kids that we have been grooming for several years and now it’s their time to shine and that’s up to them. They are the ones that have to tackle; they are the ones that have to catch the ball and hold on to it, and block. I think they are excited to get to do something other than hit each other, to go full speed in a live situation with people in the community behind them and in the stands. It’s hard for us to simulate that in practice. The potential to do well is always there, but it always comes down to the live competition, and that’s up to them.”
 Helping lead the charge to defend Weiser’s 2021 3A State Championship is transfer quarterback Andrew Enders, who moved with his family to Weiser from Nyssa last May.
 Like his predecessor, Brett Spencer, Enders is athletic and can make plays. He led Nyssa High School to the 2021 Oregon 3A state playoffs where the Bulldogs lost 34-6 to No. 2-ranked Rainier in the first round.
 He told the Weiser Signal American in June that Weiser has more offensive weapons than his former team, a statement supported by Weiser head coach Tom Harrison, especially in terms of wideouts.
 “We like our wide receivers,” he said on Monday. “We have a lot of them that can come in and give us everything we need. They have good hands and are pretty good blockers, so we look to those guys having a big game for us on Friday.”
 Seniors Malakye Scott and Brayden Walker appear to be the starters, but Harrison said junior Jack Shirts and sophomore Xander Gray will also see time at the position.
 “It’s nice that we have four guys for two spots, so all those guys are going to see minutes,” Harrison said.
Running backs include senior Michael Youngberg and junior Brock Spencer, who caught plenty of passes as well from his brother Brett in 2021.
 Junior Kaleb Grove and senior Maddox Stevens will share time at the fullback position. 
 Senior William Sudderth is the new center, but starting junior right offensive tackle, Braden Phillips, can play the position as well. Junior Tristan McMahill returns as the starting left tackle.
 “We have some kids on defense returning also and the guys who are coming in do have experience from last year,” Harrison said.
 Due to last season’s high-scoring games, plenty of back up players saw time on the field, which carries over to the 2022 season.
 “We had 16 weeks of football last year, so with a good system, good coaches, we hope to hit the field running,” Harrison said.


Signal American

18 E. Idaho St.
Weiser, ID 83672
PH: (208) 549-1717
FAX: (208) 549-1718

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