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About Hermiston herald. (Hermiston, Or.) 1994-current | View This Issue
A10 • HERMISTONHERALD.COM
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 17, 2018
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BACK ON THE FIELD
Noland’s change of heart
paying dividends for
By ANNIE FOWLER
here’s something about
a crisp fall morning that
appeals to Wyatt Noland.
Walking among the fall-
ing leaves and tracking deer and elk
puts the Hermiston senior in his happy
“I have been doing it forever,” he
said of hunting. “My dad (Justin) and
my uncle (Judd Noland) are really
big into hunting, and I got into it too.
I love the mountains. I could be there
It was hunting and his love of the
outdoors that drew Noland away from
football last year.
“I was hunting with my uncle last
year when they were playing in the
state championship game,” Noland
said of Hermiston’s 38-35 victory over
Churchill for the Oregon 5A state title.
“I never went to one game last year. I
was the same old me, I just didn’t play
football. I focused more on baseball
and went hunting.”
A change of heart
Noland, 17, had planned on play-
ing football last year, participating in
spring drills and attending every work-
out. He was penciled in as the starting
When it came time to hand out gear,
Noland was nowhere to be found.
He wasn’t going to play this year
either, but some sage advice from fam-
ily and coaches swayed him to strap on
the pads one last time.
Assistant football coach Mike
Mosher had a long talk with Noland,
and quarterback and longtime friend
Andrew James also put in his two
“Coach Mosher said he really
needed someone like me,” Noland
said. “Andrew texted me and said he’d
like to ball with me this year. I decided
to do it.”
James said he supported Noland last
year, but is glad to be sharing the back-
field with him this fall.
“Last year, everyone was kind of
like, OK,” James said. “He put in a lot
of work in the spring. We were lifting
partners. It was his decision and I stood
STAFF PHOTO BY E.J. HARRIS
Hermiston running back Wyatt Noland took his junior year of football off so that he could enjoy the outdoors and hunt big
game. Noland has come back to the gridiron for his senior season with a vengeance, racking up 1,227 yards rushing and 17
by him. Taking that year off, I think he
realizes what he missed.”
Justin Noland also had his say.
“My dad told me I had the rest
of my life to hunt, but I only have a
short time to play high school sports,”
Noland said. “It has turned out to be
fun, so far, playing football with my
Justin and Judd Noland both played
football at Stanfield High School, and
Wyatt’s grandpa Ron Noland played
on Wallowa High School’s 8-man state
championship team in 1967.
“My dad was excited I was playing
this year,” Noland said. “I think my
grandpa was more excited.”
They have reason to be.
The 6-foot-1, 195-pound Noland is
the MCC’s leading rusher with 1,227
yards through sevem games (aver-
age of 175 yards per game), and leads
the conference in scoring with 17
total touchdowns. The Bulldogs (5-2)
hosted Eisenhower in a nonleague
homecoming game last Friday.
“People feed off his toughness,”
James said. “He’s put a lot of weight
on his shoulders. He brings a lot to
the table. Without him, I don’t know
where we’d be.”
Noland was held to a season-low 82
yards two weeks ago in a 34-10 loss a
to Chiawana, but he gave credit where
it was due.
“That was the best defense we will
see all year,” Noland said. “They were
However, he turned around and put
up a career high Friday, running 303
yards for four touchdowns.
Hermiston coach David Faaeteete
said he is happy to see Noland back
out on the field.
“We are glad to have him back out,”
Faaeteete said. “He picked up where
he let off. He has a great attitude and a
good work ethic.”
A way of life
“I wish I could not go to practice and
just play in the games,” he said with
a smile. “Running people over is my
favorite thing. There will be an opening
and sometimes I will choose to run over
someone. Andrew tells me to hit the
hole or he will keep the ball himself.”
After the football season is over,
Noland will put his efforts into the
weight room and baseball, where he is
a catcher for the Bulldogs.
From there, he’s not sure what the
Western Oregon has contacted him
about playing football and baseball.
“I’d play college football, but base-
ball is my thing,” Noland said. “I prob-
ably don’t know half the things I’m
capable of. Every day, I make it the
best that I can. It may turn out that I’m
better at football.”
James said that it’s hard at times to
tell which sport Noland prefers.
“He’s loved baseball forever,”
James said. “That’s his sport. You want
him back there if you are a pitcher.
After seeing what he’s done this year
in football, I can’t tell which one he
While college is in his plans, Noland
also said he would like to one day join
the Marine Corps.
“At some point in my life, I will go
there,” he said. “I see them as the top
people. You want to be the best, you
train with the best.”
Noland has a career day in Hermiston’s win over Ike
Bulldogs need to step up
defense against Hanford
By ANNIE FOWLER
By ANNIE FOWLER
Was that good enough?
That was the question Herm-
iston coach David Faaeteete
asked his team Friday night after
beating Eisenhower 61-42 in a
nonleague tilt at Kennison Field.
“The defense was disappoint-
ing,” said Faaeteete, whose team
gave up more points than it had
“We took a step back. We
have to get better. We weren’t
making tackles and the D-Line
was getting blown off the ball.”
Hermiston’s offense was in
fine working order Friday night.
Wyatt Noland ran for a
career high 303 yards and four
“He was a workhorse,” Faae-
Noland picked up a big chunk
of his yards on touchdown runs
of 58 and 65 yards in the second
Hermiston led 14-7 after the
first quarter, then pulled away in
the second, needing less than 2
minutes on each of its scoring
The Bulldogs took a 41-21
lead into halftime, scoring on six
of their eight possessions.
The highlight of the first half
for the Bulldogs was a 90-yard
kickoff return for a touchdown
by Jordan Ramirez in the second
“I was dead after that,”
Ramirez said. “I couldn’t feel
my legs. I saw a hole open up
and I ran through it. I looked
back and there was nothing
(penalty flags). It was beautiful.”
Noland ran for first-half
The top two offenses in the Mid-Co-
lumbia Conference will take the field
Friday night at Fran Rish Stadium in
The Hermiston Bulldogs (5-2 overall,
4-2 MCC) will take on the Hanford Fal-
cons (6-1, 5-1) in a game that features two
of the top running backs in the league.
The Bulldogs have gotten 1,227 yards
and 17 touchdowns from Wyatt Noland,
who leads the MCC in rushing. He broke
free for 303 yards and four touchdowns
last week against Eisenhower.
“He has his bumps and bruises, but it is
his warrior spirit that drives him,” Herm-
iston coach David Faaeteete said. “He and
Andrew James, they want to put it on the
line for their teammates. Same for Jacob
Liebe. They love their brothers so much,
they are willing to compete. That makes
you want to coach football.”
The Falcons feature running Jared
Devine, who has run for 537 yards and
nine touchdowns. But where Hanford
moves the ball is through the air. Quarter-
back Garrett Horner has thrown for 1,701
yards and 18 touchdowns to a variety of
receivers, with Blake VanderTop being his
favorite with 20 catches for 309 yards and
“Hanford is playing well, they are
on fire,” Faaeteete said. “They are well
coached and they do things at a high level.
We match up well in some areas. It will
be a battle of wills - about ball control and
explosive plays. We’ll see if we can get
our defense reaffirmed for the week.”
The Bulldogs gave up a season-high
559 yards to Eisenhower last week, with
336 coming in the air.
“We didn’t do anything well,” Faae-
teete said of his team’s defense. “We were
soft up front and we didn’t tackle well.
We just did not put it together against
STAFF PHOTO BY E.J. HARRIS
Eisenhower’s Damian Pacheco gets stripped of the ball by Hermiston’s Ryan Arnold in the Bulldogs’ 61-
42 win against the Cadets on Friday in Hermiston.
touchdowns of 34 and 3 yards,
while Andrew James had scor-
ing runs of 19 and 34 yards.
James finished with 117 yards
on the ground.
Youbani Razon also caught
a 20-yard scoring pass from
Eisenhower tried to climb
back in the game late, and had
the ball inside the Hermiston
10-yard line in the final seconds,
but could not convert on fourth
The Cadets got 173 yards and
two touchdown from Damian
Pacheco, while Drew Reyes
caught touchdown passes of 37
and 22 yards from Drew Kor-
negay. Kornegay threw for 336
yards and three touchdowns.
Hermiston (5-2 overall, 4-2
MCC) will return to Mid-Co-
lumbia Conference play Friday,
taking on Hanford at Fran Rish
7 14 -42
7 13 -61
H - Andrew James 19 run (Juan Carlos Navar-
H - Wyatt Noland 34 run (Navarrete kick)
E - Damian Pacheco 1 run (Thomas Oplinger
H - Youbani Razon 20 pass from James (Navar-
H - James 34 run (Navarrete kick)
H - Noland 3 run (pass failed)
E - Drew Reyes 37 pass from Drew Kornegay
H - Jordan Ramirez 90 kickoff return (Navarrete
E - Jesse Magallon 8 pass from Kornegay
H - Noland 58 run (Navarrete kick)
E - Pacheco 1 run (Oplinger kick)
E - Reyes 22 pass from Kornegay (Oplinger kick)
H - James 1 run (pass failed)
E - Demario Morgan 2 run (Oplinger kick)
H - Noland 65 run (Navarrete kick)
Passing – HHS, Andrew James 9-10-0-79-1;
EHS Drew Kornegay 22-39-1-336.
Rushing – HHS, Andrew James 10-117, Wyatt
Noland 20-303, Trevor Wagner 1-2; EHS Damian
Pacheco 35-173, Demario Morgan 6-13, Drew
Kornegay 8-34, Drew Reyes 1-3.
Receiving – HHS, Youbani Razon 2-20, Garrett
Walchli 2-24, Jordan Ramirez 4-28, Wyatt Noland
1-7; EHS Demario Mogan 1-7, Drew Reyes 9-185,
Malachi Spurrier 3-29, Jesse Magallon 5-79, Will