The last time Mark Hester set foot on Joe Albi Stadium turf, his Sedro Woolley Cubs were unbeaten and in the State AA semifinals.
Tonight, Hester will debut as Shadle Park’s new football coach at 7:30 p.m. against Ferris and the Greater Spokane League’s other new coach, former Highlander assistant Clarence Hough.
Football begins for all North Side schools this week. First up today at Albi is the Mead-Rogers game at 5 p.m., followed by the Shadle Park-Ferris game.
On Friday, Gonzaga Prep and North Central play at 8:30 p.m. Riverside, now in the Frontier League, maintains its neighborhood rivalry at Deer Park and Lakeside is at Kellogg.
What fans will see this season from the Hester-coached Shadle Park team is the same double tight end, full-house backfield that befuddled West Valley High School back in 1983 with its deception back.
The three-back T-formation presents a triple option threat without the need to pitch a football.
Besides, he added, not often do GSL teams face the prospect of defending against two tight ends.
Hester, whose father, Gerald, was Spokane School District 81 superintendent, has coached 18 years, 13 at Sedro Woolley and most recently Liberty of Issaquah.He went 69-45 at the two schools before taking on Shadle Park’s program that for 18 years was the charge of Bob Haney.
“I’m excited, the kids are excited and the coaches are excited,” said Hester. “The pressure is there. We don’t want to let people down.”
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