Time to put away the sandals and put the beach towels in the closet, because summer is over and prep football teams are back on the field getting ready for the 2019 season.

Although these are the first official practices, teams have been preparing towards the end of spring and throughout the summer.

“The kids are always excited and a lot of kids are ready to step up and you know, it’s their turn,” Adna coach KC Johnson said. “We do so much stuff through spring ball and all of our summer lifting and team camps that these guys have really been playing football since June 1.”

Expectations are high for teams throughout Lewis County. For many teams, the mentality is state title or bust.

“Well, it’s always a state championship. You look at the last three years, we’ve always lost out in the first round. This year, we’re hoping to get over the hump and hopefully win a state championship,” senior Pe Ell-Willapa Valley running back Max Smith said.

Even though many coaches have been through several fall camps, the first day of official practice is always a good feeling to step back out onto the field after nine months away.

“It is like a new car except you do so much stuff with them in the summer, there’s really not a lot of surprises,” Centralia coach Jeremy Thibault said. “It’s just good to have their summer sports over and football is the main topic right now so it’s nice. I like it and the kids are hungry, they’re all ready to go and not worn out yet.”

Teams have two weeks and a day in order to prepare for the first official games on Friday, Sept. 6. The Chronicle’s prep football tab, previewing the 2019 season, will be released in the Thursday, Sept. 5, issue of The Chronicle.

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