Overholt sets passing record
Wilsonville may not have won the gold, but there will be a bit of history that should stand for a long while.
Senior quarterback Nathan Overholt is now the record holder for most touchdown passes at the 5A level. He accomplished the feat in the state championship game against Thurston on Saturday, Nov. 24.
"One thing I want to say about the record is that the guys around me wanted me to break that record," Overholt said in the wake of the championship game.
"Throughout the year, when they saw that I was on pace for it they were in my ear saying, 'You've got to break that record. You've got to do it. We're going to get you there.' The way my teammates wanted me to succeed is something I'm really thankful for."
That Overholt deflected the praise to his teammates says a lot about the team's bond. With several teammates having played together since the third grade, the on-field chemistry that led to the occasion makes sense.
"The secret to the receivers' success is our work ethic," senior wide receiver Zach Rivers said. "We go hard in practice, and this summer was big for us. Nate and us training over and over to get us good. The connection is also big. We have a special bond."
That same bond extended to the offensive front that afforded the passing game the time to do its thing. Offensive and defensive lineman Caleb Baker attributed the team's success to that connection.
"I've played with these boys since the third grade," Baker said. "These guys are probably the most talented class to come through Wilsonville. The fact that we have great team chemistry, and the fact that we know what our plans are, and our jobs, is why we were successful."
The record now stands at 59 touchdowns, after Overholt connected with Grant Irby (twice) and Zach Rivers in the team's 30-27 loss to Thurston.
The tying touchdown passes came in the team's previous game against West Albany, where Overholt completed passes to Rivers and younger brother Chad Overholt.
Head coach Adam Guenther shared the disappointment of the star quarterback in not winning it all, but was quick to laud the senior.
"Nathan is a stud," Guenther said. "He's a great kid, a great football player. Like I said, he's a better person. He's one of the leaders on this team, and he plays his game. I guarantee you the record is great, but he'll trade it in a heartbeat for the title. It didn't work out that way tonight."
The record had been held by Beaverton's Taylor Barton, set way back in 1997. With a wide variety of talented wide receivers at his disposal, it's no wonder Overholt was able to make the goal.
Over the course of the season, Overholt had five games where he threw for six touchdowns including both Crater contests, and the preseason shootout with Churchill.