Tualatin triumphs at linemen challenge
HILLSBORO — Looking ahead to the 2018 football season, the Tualatin High School team seems to have plenty of potential to put together a banner campaign.
However, it could be said, while looking ahead, that the question mark for the Timberwolves could be the play in the offensive and defensive line. That seems logical, after all Tualatin graduated many key linemen from last year's team that went 7-4 on the season.
Well, that might not be quite a question mark any more — at least if the Metro Area Lineman Challenge is any indication.
Tualatin, for the second straight year, claimed the team title at the 2018 Metro Area Lineman Challenge, a competition that featured such events as the 40-yard dash, the shuttle run, vertical jump, standing broad jump, bench press, farmer's carry, tractor tire flip, two-man sled relay and the team tug of war,
held July 14 at Hare Field.
"It's going really good," Quinn McCarthy, a Tualatin High School senior-to-be, said during the competition. "We've been practicing hard for this."
"The coaches really get into this," Tualatin senior-to-be Dominique Loggins added.
The Wolves claimed the team title at this year's event — marking the sixth time in nine years that Tualatin finished in first place — with a score of 58 points. Rival Tigard finished in second place, out of 29 teams, with a score of 48, and Jesuit was third at 46.
The Wolves are taking their championship as a good sign.
"We've been working hard, and we take a lot of pride in this," McCarthy said. "We're trying to bond as a group. We need that teamwork before anything else. You have to trust the person next to you. This is my first year doing this (the lineman challenge), and I think it's great."
"I love it," said Loggins, who also was competing at the lineman challenge for the first time.
And Loggins, who plays at linebacker on the defensive side of the ball, made quite a debut, setting a new all-time Metro Area Lineman Challenge record with his winning time of 4.54 seconds in the 40-yard dash.
"I thought I'd do better," Loggins said with a laugh, while talking about his event-record time. "I wanted 4.4, but I'll take 4.54."
Loggins also took first place in the 20-yard shuttle run, with a mark of 4.25, and he finished in second place in the vertical jump, with a height of 35.0 inches, putting him just barely behind Jesuit's Charlie Martin, who took first place with a MLC record leap of 35.4.
"I didn't expect that," Loggins said. "I didn't know I could jump that high."
Loggins also had a team-best mark of 104 inches in the broad jump. In the bench press, he had 13 lifts with 185 pounds on the bar, tying him for third best on the team. He also had 12 tire flips, tying for best mark on the team.
For the entire competition, Loggins finished in second place in the lightweight division, behind only Martin, and he finished in third place overall.
John Miller, a Tualatin junior-to-be, also had a strong performance, finishing in fifth place in the lightweight division and sixth overall.
Miller tied for team honors in the tire flip with 12 and he paced the squad in the farmer's carry with a distance of 80 yards. Miller also had 13 lifts in the bench press. He was second on the team, behind just Loggins, in the vertical jump, at 29.5, and the broad jump, at 99.0. He was also second on the team in the shuttle run with a time of 4.56.
McCarthy, one of the Wolves' biggest competitors, at 6-foot-6, 263 pounds, also stepped up at the challenge. He had 13 lifts in the bench press, 64 yards in the farmer's carry and 11 tire flips.
"Quinn has been working really hard," Tualatin assistant coach Servando Osorio said. "Everyone has been. We've been practicing every day for this."
And it seemed to show.
Junior-to-be Cody Van Meter also had some strong numbers. He tied for top mark on the team with 12 tire flips, and tied senior-to-be Alex Armstrong for team honors in the bench pres with 15 lifts. Van Meter was also third on the team in the farmer's carry with 61 yards.
Senior-to-be Dane Norlin had 11 tire flips, 12 lifts in the bench press and a distance of 60 yards in the farmer's carry.
Tualatin, as a team, finished in second place in the two-man blocking sled relay with a time of 1:09, putting the Wolves just one second behind Tigard.
Other members of the Tualatin team at the lineman challenge included Dylan Nguyen and Brett Gydesen. The Tualatin 2 team included Dawson Comstock (who had 12 tire flips), Brandon Chin, Tyler Dickson, Nick Boothby, Seth Farris, Dominic Webb, Nolan Fragiao and Curt Strahm.
"This is great," McCarthy said of the lineman challenge. "You get to see who else is working hard to get ready."
The Wolves will open the 2018 season on Aug. 31, when they host Southridge in a non-league game.
"We're looking forward to it," Loggins said. "It's our senior year, and we'll be ready for anyone."