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Lakewood Cougars return to the gridiron
LAKEWOOD — Training is underway for the Lakewood High School football team, which returned to the field Aug. 15 to prepare for the upcoming season.
“Last week and this week we’re having installation days for our offense and defense,” said head coach Dan Teeter on Aug. 22. “We’re just kind of doing running schemes, pass protection and that sort of thing, and we aren’t focusing on a particular opponent.”
The team will work on practicing for a specific opponent during the week before their first game, Teeter said.
Lakewood’s first game is an away game on Aug. 31 against the Washington High School Patriots in Tacoma.
The Cougars finished up last season by making it to the state championships, although they lost to W.F. West in the quarterfinals playoff game with a final score of 33-18. The Cougars hope to make it state once again this year, and stand a good chance with three strong returning players.
“Justin Peterson is our starting quarterback,” said Teeter. “He was the all-league first team quarterback last year as well.”
Peterson, a three-sport athlete at Lakewood, who also competes in basketball and track and field, holds the school record for the most touchdowns in a game. He also boasts the school’s longest streak of games with a touchdown scored, a total of 22 straight. Peterson was the long-jump state champion for Lakewood at the state track and field championships in May.
In addition to Peterson returning, the Cougars’ wide receiver Brandon Stott will be back, after making it to the all-league first team offense in 2011 as well.
“He’s a career leader in receiving yards and receptions,” said Teeter. “And he’s the fastest kid on the team.”
Running back Donovan Evans made the all-league second-team offense last year with nine rushing touchdowns and two receiving and is back for the Cougars this year. Evans holds the school record for the most rushing yards in a season, having rushed for more than 1,100 yards in 2011.
“It’s really good to have the strength of these three guys back this year,” said Teeter. “We lost most of our offensive line and we have only three starting on our defensive line.”
Teeter said he has high hopes for this year’s crop of players and wants to see them build their team spirit.
“We want to come together as a team. We like to say that we are a family,” he said.
As far as their goals for this season, they remain high.
“We just want to keep building on the success we had last year,” he said. “We want to repeat our league championship win and get further in the state championships.”
The Cougars face the Patriots on Aug. 31 at 7 p.m. at Franklin Pierce High School stadium, located at 11002 18th Ave. East in Tacoma.