The Weston-McEwen TigerScots, from small-town Athena, Oregon, are getting set to play the football state championship game. It’s the first time in decades they’ve made it to the title competition.
ATHENA, Ore. — Weston-McEwen High School is headed to the 2A Football State Championships this weekend. The game is a battle between eastern-Oregon’s TigerScots, and western-Oregon’s Oakers.
This game is a big deal for the TigerScots, from small-town Athena.
“It was a dream come true,” said coach Kenzie Hansell. “Now, they’re living their dream and we’re practicing in the end of November.”
It’s the first time in decades the team has gotten to the finals for football.
There’s less than 200 students at W-M, and more than 50 football players on the team.
“You know, football is the thing to do in Athena,” said coach Hansell.
“Every person comes out and plays football at our school, and it’s amazing,” said quarterback Easton Berry.
“Everybody knows everybody,” said Dylan Youncs, starting DN and tight end.
The school is small, and so is the community, but don’t let that fool you.
“We have the most loud, supportive fans that anybody could ask for and that type of support has been a huge part of our success,” explained coach Hansell.
“Our entire community has done so much for us this season. They’ve helped us have enough money for meals when we go on trips. They help with hotel fees. They’ve been amazing this entire season,” said Youncs.
The TigerScots are coming off a tight battle against the Colton High School Vikings, which couldn’t have had a more intense ending.
“That was a very emotional game,” recalled Youncs. “There were some times where some of us didn’t think we were gonna pull it through.”
“Sure enough, with nine seconds left we scored a touchdown and won by one,” coach Hansell said.
“We were up and then we fell back down and then with nine seconds, our quarterback ran it in,” said Cameron Rich, a wide receiver.
“It was good,” the quarterback said, reliving the moment. “It was really fun.”
“And it was just, you know, throw your helmets up in the air. It was so much fun,” concluded Rich.
The team plays the Oakland Oakers on Saturday at Hillsboro Stadium at 1 o’clock, hoping their helmets get some air-time once again. Find tickets here.
“We get to do some that only two teams in our school’s history has ever done, and it just means a lot to our community especially,” said Rich.
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