The Enumclaw Hornets open the 2014 season loaded with talent and ready to do battle in a newly-aligned South Puget Sound League 3A.
The Hornets open the season with the Battle of the Bridge against White River Sept. 5 at Enumclaw.
Coach Mark Gunderson said he “loves the new league. It should be a really fun year.”
This season, the Sumner Spartans return to the 3A coached by Enumclaw High graduate and football star Keith Ross. Ross played for Gunderson’s dad when he suited up for the Hornets.
Auburn and Auburn Riverside are also in the league along with Auburn Mountainview, Lakes, Peninsula and Bonney Lake. Decatur has grown and departed for the Class 4A ranks.
Gunderson said the base offense for the Hornets is a Power-I and, defensively, it’s a 5-2 formation. The offensive coordinator is Jason Patterson and the defensive coordinator is Gunderson.
The coach is said five starters are returning on offense and defense.
Senior Eli Dennison, a second team all-league performer, is back on the offensive and defensive line.
Senior wide receiver Trey Rodarte is expected to add depth on patterns and senior Tarik Hagan is a second team all-league defensive back and wide receiver.
Gunderson said linebacker and tailback Mason Harp is one of the hardest workers on the team.
The coach said middle linebacker Jarrett Azevedo is a very physical and dynamic player and Jared Sprague, offensive line, is “disciplined and tough.” Gunderson, who is in his third season on the sidelines for the Hornets, has a number of rising stars expected to be impact players.
Those include Sam Schuler, middle linebacker, and Tyler Harris, running back, who Gunderson said may be one of the best player in the league. Scotty Garvin at quarterback should have a standout year along with running back Connor Pierce who are both excellent athletes.
“We have a great group of kids that have bought into our brotherhood,” Gunderson said.