Vic Lease is still in town, which means Mazama will be just fine. From the time the Viking football program started in 1979 until Lease’s hire in 2013, Mazama had a grand total of five 7+ win seasons. In the 6 seasons Lease has been the Vikings head coach, they’ve already had 5 7+ win seasons. 46-14 in 6 seasons, 5 league championships, 5 playoff appearances, and 2 semi finals appearances. No, the Vikings don’t bring back any 2018 all-state players, but good coaching can take you a long way in high school football.
Offensively, the players lost by the Vikings include first team all-state running back Chris Zakour, and two honorable mention Offensive Lineman in Zach Coon and Christian Kasper. On the defensive side of things, first team all-state LB Jake Healy, second team all-state DL Zach Coon, DB Zach Gibson and honorable mention DL Christian Kasper all leave a Viking defense that held teams to under 14 points on five different occasions last season. While Mazama did lose some key players, returning is a large junior class that are now seniors, including QB Nate Beck.
Mazama lost one game in 2018 to in-state opponents: Marshfield, on the road, in the state quarterfinals. A late strip sack on Beck clinched the game late for the Pirates, ending the Vikings 2018 season.
We predict the Vikings will either go 8-0 or 7-1 in 2019. A very tough week six contest @ Marist Catholic will be very telling on if Mazama is capable of a return to the final four. An easier league schedule will provide games to build confidence, and solidify positions for big contests.
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