North Tahoe football | Lakers to kick off season Friday at rival Incline | SierraSun.com

North Tahoe football | Lakers to kick off season Friday at rival Incline

Sylas Wright
swright@sierrasun.com

File photoSenior Baird Bishop, shown punting against Incline last season, and the North Tahoe football team will open their season at the Highlanders on Friday at 6 p.m.

The Lakers are licking their lips for the chance to hit some Highlanders and#8212; and vice versa.

The North Shore Division III rivals are set to square off Friday at Inclineand#8217;s Highlander Stadium for the Lakersand#8217; opening game of the season. Incline already has a game under its belt, a 28-12 win against Sierra Ridge Academy last week.

and#8220;The team is looking in shape for the first game,and#8221; said longtime North Tahoe head coach Scott Everist. and#8220;As with our numbers, physical conditioning has been a priority, so our execution is not at the level it needs to be and#8212; although we are improving rapidly, so the kids will be physically tough but mental errors are a concern.and#8221;

The Lakers will field a much different team than a year ago after losing to graduation several role players from the 2011 squad, including quarterback Brendon Arnold and running back Chris Hoffman, as well as Oakley Keeler and Mike Paschall. In addition, senior Colin Spencer and sophomore Mitchell Myers are not out for the team.

With Arnold gone, 5-foot-9, 128-pound junior Alex Bourriague will lead the Lakers as starting quarterback. Everist gave Bourriague, an athletic three-sport athlete, a nod of approval.

and#8220;He brings an intense competitive spirit and speed to the position,and#8221; he said. and#8220;He has a lot on his plate as a first-year player, but expectations still remain high.and#8221;

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Other key returners for the Lakers include lineman and fullback Justin and#8220;Busterand#8221; Fenley, tight end and linebacker Baird Bishop, lineman Jordy Holst, running back and defensive back Brandon Hayakawa, and tight end and linebacker Jeramie Peart. Fenley and Bishop are co-team captains.

The Lakersand#8217; roster is 18 players deep, compared to Inclineand#8217;s 17.

and#8220;As always, weand#8217;re excited to play. The thin blue line continues,and#8221; Everist said.