Grizzlies surprise southern squads on Oregon road trip

The GW Graham Grizzlies surprised some American opponents, winning a seven-on-seven passing tourney at Oregon's Rilea Army Base.

GW Graham’s Varsity Football team took its third annual team trip to Oregon last weekend.

The camp at Rilea Army Base, south of Astoria, OR, welcomes 18 teams from BC, Washington State and Oregon for five days of controlled scrimmages, a seven-on-seven passing tournament and joint practice sessions.

The Grizzlies went undefeated (7-0) in the tournament and won the championship game by a score of 34-25 over Tacoma’s Liberty High School.

“We were seeded 15th out of 18 teams and won the entire tournament, so it’s fair to say we surprised a few teams along the way,” said GWG head coach Laurie Smith about the small but spirited group that represented GW Graham. “We have a very capable passing attack with QBs Terrell Sparvier and Ryan Connelly, and a deep group of receivers that includes Emerson Smith, Baker Douglas, Kirk Kennedy, Trey Walsh and Tyler Sprott.”

Standout wide receiver Walsh was named the tournament’s most valuable player.

The linemen also participate in offensive and defensive line competitions, with Diego Pineda taking runner-up honours in both categories.

“We have a special group this year and it became apparent with the way they competed against very good competition,” Smith said. “I’m expecting a very competitive varsity group.”