All that hard work put into the spring and summer will be put to the test this week for the Greenwave football team.
Practice officially kicks off the fall season when football teams are allowed to begin their quest for a state championship with non-pad workouts Thursday and Friday. The rest of the fall sports begin practice on Monday, while the football team will resume its workouts but with pads.
Brooke Hill’s squad will feature plenty of new faces after last year’s seniors helped guide Fallon to its third-straight postseason appearance.
Hill and his club started the summer campaign at a camp in Lake Tahoe, where the Wave displayed their grit. Fallon won the lifting, skills and linemen competitions in the seven-team event.
Another plus for Hill’s team, though, has been the participation. More than 100 players came out to summer workouts and 95 percent of the returners made more than 80 percent of the practices.
“We are excited and ready to go,” Hill said. “There is a lot of optimism.”
On Aug. 24, the Wave will host rival Fernley in a scrimmage. Hill said the Quarterback Club is organizing an event to draw residents and youth football players to the game.
Based on college spring games, Hill said they hope to provide food, bounce houses and provide a fun atmosphere for fans wanting an early taste of football.
The game will be split between the freshman and JV — tentatively set for 9 a.m. — and the varsity teams at 11 a.m.
“We want to tout this as the start of the season,” Hill said. “It’s a way to get people excited.”
Fallon began the 2012 campaign strongly and didn’t lose its first game until it hosted Truckee late in the season before falling to Lowry twice to end the regular season and in the playoffs’ first round.
The Greenwave notched impressive wins during their streak to start the season. Scoring wasn’t a problem but the defense showed inconsistencies defending the pass.
Fallon scored no fewer than 30 points before it faced cross-county rival Fernley. The most points the defense allowed was 21 against Spring Creek.
But after Fernley recorded one of the biggest upsets in Nevada history by snapping Truckee’s winning streak, Fallon returned the favor to stun Fernley the following week, 12-0, and become the only undefeated team in the league until the Truckee encounter.
Hill lost most of his defense to graduation, including the secondary and some key linemen and linebackers. Returning-senior quarterback Morgan Dirickson lost his three favorite targets who logged in at least 200 yards, and the backfield is mostly depleted with the loss of its leading running back and fullback.
Fallon opens the new season at home when it takes on Wooster on Sept. 9 before traveling to South Tahoe for a Friday night tilt against the Vikings. Fallon’s other home games this season include Dayton (Sept. 20), Elko (Sept. 27), Fernley (Oct. 18, Homecoming) and Lowry (Nov. 1, Senior Night). The road contests include, in addition to South Tahoe, Sparks (Oct. 4), Spring Creek (Oct. 11) and Truckee (Oct. 26).
Steve Puterski contributed to this report.