PREP FOOTBALL: Bear River Bruins hard at work preparing for upcoming season
After nearly three decades of coaching Bear River football, Terry Logue knows what he needs to see from his players in order for the team to be successful.
“I just want to see Bear River effort, Bear River attitude and Bear River hustle. If we get that we’ll be OK,” said Logue, who along with co-head coach Scott Savoie has led the Bruins to four section championship games in the last five years, winning two of them (2014, 2017).
With the first game of the 2019 high school football season less than two months away, the Bruins are hard at work as they prepare for what they hope will be another strong season on the gridiron.
Logue and Savoie are starting with a squad of 22 players this season, which is a relatively small roster.
“It’s not by design,” Logue said with a laugh. “We’re very thin in numbers again, but our heart is big. We work hard and we’re trying real hard.”
A small roster is nothing new for the Bruins and it didn’t slow them a season ago when their 24-man team went 11-2 and reached the D-V title game. But, there are big shoes to fill as the team graduated 16 players from last season’s team, including 10 All-Pioneer Valley League selections.
Leading the Bruins on the field this season will be Tre Maronic, a 2018 All-PVL First Team selection who did a little bit of everything for the team during his junior year. Last season, Maronic spent the majority of the offensive snaps at running back where he led the team in rushing yards (1,182), all-purpose yards (1,766) and touchdowns (19). Defensively, Maronic was a standout cornerback, notching 36 tackles, an interception, three fumble recoveries and five passes defensed. On special teams, he blocked two punts and returned a kickoff for a touchdown.
This season, Maronic has a new challenge as he moves into the quarterback position, taking over for Calder Kunde, who will be playing football at American River College this fall.
“It’s different, but I’m glad that I have the ball in my hands and I can be trusted with that,” said Maronic, who did see some action at QB a season ago, completing 4-of-11 passes for 101 yards.
Maronic looked good in a 7-on-7 scrimmage with Nevada Union Wednesday at Hooper Stadium, throwing for three touchdowns, two of which came on the Bruins’ final two drives.
The 6-foot, 4-inch, Maronic is also getting a lot of attention from college programs. The senior, who can play multiple positions on both sides of the ball, recently wrapped up several visits and camps at college campuses.
“It’s been a crazy experience,” said Maronic, who has narrowed down his choices to, in no particular order, University of Wyoming, Arizona State, San Diego State, University of San Diego and University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
While Maronic has a big decision coming up, for now he is focused on getting himself and his team ready for the upcoming season. So far, he likes what he’s seen.
“In the first few weeks of practice, the team came together and molded pretty quick,” Maronic said. “After our first 7-on-7 with Lincoln we had some problems, on defense mostly, and the next practice everyone knew what we needed to work on and we got it done. And, at the next 7-on 7 with Western Sierra, we came out and played better … We’re improving slowly, but by our first game we’ll be ready to go.”
The Bruins return another 2018 All-PVL selection in Colton Jenkins, who has impressed as a pass catcher this summer. Last year, Jenkins was a standout at defensive back as well as a capable backup quarterback, going 10-for-23 for 160 yards in limited action.
While Maronic is taking the bulk of the snaps at quarterback during the team’s 7-on-7s, Logue said both Maronic and Jenkins will see time at the position this season.
“(Maronic) is going to play quarterback. Colton (Jenkins) will play some quarterback. They’ll be both in and out of there,” Logue said.
Other returning players who figure to play big roles for the Bruins this season include running backs Zach Fink and Jacob Ayestaran, and linemen Caleb Hurst and Warren Davis.
The Bruins have a 7-on-7 tourney at Bella Vista High School today, their last of the summer. They are allowed to practice up until July 8 when the Section’s “dead period” begins. The dead period ends July 29. Bear River has a scrimmage with Nevada Union Aug. 16 and kicks off the season at home against Truckee Aug. 23.
To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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