2021 Football Camp Sets Stage for Season

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DEFENSE: Junior Kaleb Spalding and Senior Mason Hutchison getting ready to tackle the opposing Preston Indians. The defense held Preston to 28 points.

Carlie McInnes

At the end of every July the football team converges on Braves field for their annual football camp.  This year camp was July 19th through the 22nd. The purpose of this camp is not only to practice football, but also to get closer as a team for the upcoming season. 

Camp started early Monday morning at 7:00 a.m. where the boys started by turning in their phones and car keys. Every year they do this to get rid of any outside distractions so they can focus on football and their teammates. The rest of camp involved meetings and lots of drills and practicing football!  

Throughout the whole week the boys were privileged to listen to inspiring, motivating speeches and presentations.  The team also learned valuable life lessons and forged stronger relationship with their teammates. 

Strong relationships are important for any football team. They help players perform better on the field.  “The camp made us grow closer together because some of the kids were new, and we got to know them by spending the whole week with them. We also perform better on the field because of how much we practiced in the week,” said junior Jacob Hodges.

Football camp was a long and tiring week filled with fun service projects and activities. On Tuesday the team split off into groups to go haul hay and clean up the bunkers on the golf course. After doing the service projects, they went to the famous Grover bridge to go have some fun in the water. Then on Wednesday the team all got in busses and went to Bear Lake. They spent a few hours playing beach volleyball, splashing in the water, and just relaxing on the beach. “My favorite part about football camp was the food and being able to hang with the boys while playing football,” said freshman Bryson Nield. Sophomore Malachi Patterson added, “My favorite part of camping was going to Bear Lake.”

This camp is an important thing for the team because it hints and predicts how they will perform for the upcoming season. Every player and even the coaches go into the week with goals, hoping to achieve them by the end of the week. “My expectations as a senior going into the camp were for it to be more up-tempo and serious, still have fun but be fully engaged in the practices we did. By the end of the camp the team had achieved them for the most part; it was a lot of fun, and we were flowing pretty good by the end of the week,” said senior Mason Hutchison.

CRASH: The Braves take on another play against the Preston Indians. The Braves went on to lose the game 27-28.

This year’s camp was different from last year because last year the boys couldn’t stay at the school due to Covid-19. However, there were many other reasons as to why the camp this year was different. “This year camp was different from last year because we all took it a lot more seriously, and we learned a lot more which made it way more fun,” said junior Chase Stewart. He also said his expectations going into the camp were “that the whole team would bond and get closer as a team which would help us perform better on the field.” 

The players wrapped up their week by playing in a intraquad scrimmage on their home field. The game helped them prepare for the season and get ready for their upcoming games. After the scrimmage they all rapidly ran to the box that held their phones and car keys to catch up with their family and friends that they hadn’t seen all week.

Most of the boys went straight home, but some stayed out that night to hang with friends and catch up on what they had missed. As the 2021 football season has now started, the Braves are preparing every week for their big Friday night games.  Each player can reflect back on what they learned during football camp and how it positively affected them going forward in what each player hopes will be a season full of many wins and a state title.

Every night at camp the boys would hold a mini-camp for upcoming middle school boys which helped them learn the importance of coaching and bring what they had learned to the younger boys. As the camp ended the boys were excited to go home but also realized that they would miss it even though it was a long and tiring week.