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Cavaliers on the rise

Five standout Clackamas athletes accept scholarship offers


by: JOHN DENNY - The Clackamas High School community last week celebrated the decisions of four top football players to accept scholarships to play football in college. Pictured are (from left): David Reese, Zach Farnes, Dan Smiley Sherrell and Brody Haehlen.Clackamas High School football and track and field fans turned out in force on Feb. 5, as the Cavaliers’ celebrated five of their top athletes’ signing letters of intent to compete in athletics in college.

Four football players who helped the Cavaliers complete one of their most successful football seasons in years were there, along with track and field standout Connor McLean.

Seniors Zach Farnes and Dan “Smiley” Sherrell announced their decision to play football together at Western Oregon University, senior David Reese announced his decision to accept a scholarship to play football for the University of Montana, and senior Brody Haehlen announced his decision to play football at Northern Colorado.

McLean, the defending state champion in the pole vault, will attend the Air Force Academy, where he’ll study mechanical engineering.

McLean, who is a 3.94 student, says his scholarship is a full-ride, valued at over $440,000 for four years of education.

“I feel like this sets me up for the future, and I like the coaches there,” said McLean, who also visited the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Washington, and received an offer from Duke. “Someday I’d like to own my own engineering company — own my own business.”

McLean, who has a personal record of 15-10 in competition, says he hopes to clear 16-6 this year.

“I feel 16-6 is a Division I vault and I’ll be able to place in Division I with that,” McLean said.

Sherrell, who last fall broke nearly every Clackamas High School football rushing record in the books, says he is hopeful he can earn a starting spot as a running back for the Wolves his freshman year.

“They’ve got a couple running backs coming back, but I feel like I can compete,” said Sherrell. “I’m going to work hard for that starting spot.”

by: JOHN DENNY - With proud parents looking on, (from left) Dan Sherrell, Brody Haehlen and Connor McLean sign letters of intent to accept athletic scholarships during signing ceremonies at Clackamas High School last week.Sherrell says he also received a scholarship offer from Carroll College, a top NAIA school in Helena, Montana.

“I wanted to stay closer to home and play at a higher level,” Sherrell said of his decision to go with the Wolves.

A 3.4 student at Clackamas, Sherrell said his career goal is to become a firefighter, and he said that Western Oregon has a connection with another school that specializes in firefighting.

Farnes, who played linebacker for the Cavaliers, said he also received interest from Southern Oregon, but said of his decision to go with Western, “I visited a whole bunch of schools, but felt it was the right place. It’s close to home, they have a good football program, and I get to go with my best friend [Dan Sherrell], so it’s pretty sweet.”

Farnes said he’ll likely redshirt a year, “put some weight on and work my way up the depth chart.”

A 3.5 student, Farnes plans to study business.

Reese, a two-way all-league lineman who stands 6-5 and tips the scales at 250, said he also received offers from Wyoming and North Dakota State; was recruited by Montana State, Portland State and Northern Colorado; and got offers to walk on from Oregon and Oregon State.”

“I felt the most comfortable when I visited Montana,” said Reese. “I liked the atmosphere, the tradition and the coaches, and I’m excited....

“The fan base, the tradition and the coaches are amazing. My offensive line coach, Scott Gragg, played in the NFL. He’s a Pro Bowler.”

Gragg says, “There are a lot of things we like about David Reese. First, he’s got a remarkable drive to play football at the next level. With a guy of his size and stature, that’s a big plus, and it’s a necessity in a program like ours, where you have to be all-in....

“We like the fact that he’s a big guy who plays basketball, because that means he can move his feet. He’s got size and athletic ability, and he works hard.

“As David continues to grow, and if he continues to work hard to get bigger and stronger, our expectations are that he will someday help us get that national championship.”

Reese plans to major in business.

“I want to someday work for Nike, and I can do a lot with that degree,” he said.

Haehlen, who was recruited by Northern Colorado to play defensive end, says he also received offers from the University of Montana and Idaho State.

“I chose Northern Idaho because I like the area,” he said. “It’s a beautiful place. It’s a college town. I like the coaches, I like the players.... I got along really well with the players during my visit. It kind of felt like home....

“Also, they told me I’d have a chance to play right away. That was huge. I did not want to redshirt.”

Haehlen said he is contemplating a major in either sports and exercise science or criminal justice.



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