Blaine holds annual athletic banquet to honor football team

Published on Tue, Nov 20, 2012 by Russell Paris

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Blaine’s High School football teams were honored at the Performing Arts Center (PAC) Monday, November 19. 

The pre-awards ceremony banquet dinner was held in the cafeteria starting at 5 p.m. 

Head football coach Jay Dodd did a great job doubling as master of ceremonies. He offered appetizers to the audience (parents, family and friends) and thanked them for their support and help throughout the season. Dodd wisely suggested that the audience go through the buffet line before the players, who had been eyeing the offerings. After everyone had eaten, the crowd was ushered next door into the PAC where additional family and friends had already gathered.

Dodd again thanked everyone for coming especially in the inclement weather and on a busy holiday week. Kudos and thank yous were given to the following groups:

Parents who worked the Wednesday night team dinners

Mrs. Dodd who worked the concession stand

Parents who worked the fund raising crab feed event

Volunteers who ran the golf tournament

The Northern Light (Russell Paris) for its coverage of the season 

Janelle Kortlever for her great photography

The first players honored were the C team. Made up of mostly freshman and sophomores, these young men learned the fundamentals of the game. “We want them to learn how to properly block and tackle,” Dodd said. “In our system we do not 
stress winning as much as we feel learning is paramount.” 

There were more than two dozen C team members, and they will grow into Blaine’s future varsity football players. They received their letters of achievement to the applause of the crowd.

Next, assistant coach Dave Fakkema talked about the junior varsity (JV) teams. “We played our games on Mondays, and we never knew who would be getting on the bus,” Fakkema said. 

“The junior varsity played an important role in the success of the varsity. Even on game day, some of the JV team would be needed at the varsity scrimmage as the scout squad that simulated the varsity’s next opponent.”

He mentioned that the JVs really paid their dues. The ones who did play at Monday’s game had to show up with all their 
bumps and bruises and play again against the varsity at practice on hard-hitting Tuesdays and Wednesdays. 

The audience gave these young men a loud applause when it was announced they had only lost one JV game this season.

Next, the junior varsity and varsity players were recognized by their class.

Sophomores honored: Steven Crafts, Charlie Baldwin, Matt Craig, Billy Dodd, Nate Kramme, Ben Hodgin, Kevin Sell, Austin Trahan, Kyle Brady, Cooper Lariviere, Kristian Ebenal, Rudy Nolasco, Kaden Foster, Jon Fakkema, Kurtis Sanders, Joey Sawyer, Cajun Lankford , Chris Tulloch, Adam McShane and Cody Gobbato.

Juniors honored: Zane Batchelor, Brian Ferrer, Serge Shevchenko, Joe Leeking, Jon Stewart, Alberto Morales, Israel Hernandez, Mike Antczak, Andrey Baydak, Isaiah Jackson, Tanner Anthony and Jordan Antonson.

Taking a break before honoring the seniors, Dodd wanted to thank the high school administers for their support: superintendent Ron Spanjer, principal Scott Ellis, athletic director Wayne Vezzetti and athletic co-coordinator Steve Miller. Dodd mentioned his appreciation to the chain gang crew and field turf management and game day crew.

Dodd then called up his assistants – Trevor Chau, Scott Dodd, Dave Fakkema, Ron Kowalke, Jason Little, Sean Linville, Sean Miller, Ryan Pike and Travis Thayer – to acknowledge the seniors and have the players shake each coach’s hand. 

Seniors honored: Caleb Johnson, Tyler Kelly, Christian Hardt, Kyle Weaver, Brett Allen, Tas Scanlan, Eddie Guerrero, Jordan Froneberger, Mario Gobbato, James Fakkema, Palmer Sandel, Dwayne Ortega, Miguel Ramos, Cassidy Olinger-Elarth and Cody Peura. 

“These seniors may not have met all their goals set at the Central Washington summer camp, but their seven wins set the tone for the younger players coming up,” Dodd said, to the applause of the crowd.

Individual awards from the team and coach’s votes were given out. 

Junior Varsity awards

Offensive player of the year: Rudy Nolasco

Defensive player of the year: Andrey Baydak

Varsity awards

Most improved player: Dwayne Ortega

Lineman of the year: Palmer Sandel

Defensive players of the year: Caleb Johnson and James Fakkema

The most valuable player: Mario Gobbato


To conclude the evening Jay Dodd announced his captains for next year’s team: Cole Muder, Nate Kramme, Jon Steward and Tanner Anthony.

See y’all next fall under the lights on Friday nights.