Garcia, White to play in Shrine Game
Just like in years past, Yamhill-County will be well represented. Dayton’s Forrest Garcia and Jered White will compete for the West and put on the pads one last time.
“Literally the last time,” said Garcia, who will attend Lane Community College in the fall and play baseball for the Titans. “It’s it after that. It will be fun.”
Dayton teammates Nathan Bernards and Justin Sutton are alternates for the West, as are Yamhill-Carlton’s Cesar Meza and Trevor Hunt of Willamina.
Garcia said he realized what it meant to be selected for the game. The Shriners are an important philanthropic organization, and both teams also visit the Shriner’s Hospital as part of the week’s schedule.
“It’s a big deal,” he said. “It’ll be a good experience.”
The honor for Garcia and White is the second straight year that the Pirates have had their two best players compete in Baker. Last year, 3A Defensive Player of the Year Hayden Craig and 3A Offensive Player of the Year A.J. Hedgecock suited up for the West, and Hedgecock kicked a game-winning 47-yard field goal.
This year, Garcia and White bring their own set of credentials. Garcia was named 3A Co-Offensive Player of the Year with Cascade Christian’s Brandon Williams after leading the Pirates to an undefeated record and a state championship. The Pirates defeated Cascade Christian 31-24 to win their first state championship in football since 2004. In the game, Garcia rushed for 151 yards and three touchdowns. Garcia is also listed as a free safety for the Shrine Game. He was First-Team All-State as a defensive back this past season.
White was 3A’s Co-Defensive Player of the Year with Cascade Christian’s Dane Scott. White was also First-Team All-State on offense. In the state championship game Dec. 1, 2012 vs. the Challengers, he had 103 yards receiving and also returned a punt for a touchdown. For his efforts he was named the player of the game.
White was also the West Valley League’s Defensive Player of the Year. Garcia was the WVL’s Offensive Player of the Year.
Bernards, an alternate for the West, was a First-Team All-State quarterback but strangely the coaches of the WVL voted the senior to the second team. He was 14-for-14 in the state championship game and rushed for the game-winning touchdown in the fourth quarter vs. Cascade Christian.
The 61st Oregon East-West Shrine football game will be played Aug. 3 at Bulldog Stadium in Baker City and will be televised by Root Sports Northwest.