Sports

Eagles ponder future on peninsula

After four years, the Eagles still are living a dream.

But they may be looking for a new nest.

Owners and players of the Olympic Peninsula Eagles adult football team are seeking a new direction for the team after being based for two years in Port Townsend.

After originating in Sequim for the spring/summer 2006 season and spending two years here, the team moved to Port Townsend for the past two seasons.

But now team co-owner J Piper is looking to sell of his portion of the team to someone with a vision of how to keep the Eagles local and draw players from across the Olympic Peninsula.

Part of that vision may be bringing the Eagles back to

Sequim, a central location for an Eagles roster featuring players from Neah Bay to Brinnon.

"The Eagles are committed to staying on the peninsula," Piper said.

He and other Eagle players are hosting a team meeting on Sept. 13 to detail the future of the Eagles, the peninsula's only adult football team.

"We're looking for direction," Piper says.

In the Eagles first season, in 2006 in Sequim, they were roughed up by seasoned teams in the Pacific Northwest Football Conference, posting just one forfeit win and being outscored by opponents 179-31.

A year later they went 5-5 and advanced to the conference championship game.

But the field surface at Sequim High School wasn't to the players' liking and their typical draw was only about 30 fans, Piper says.

The Eagles moved to Port Townsend in 2008 and went 4-6 in their first year before falling in the Cascade Football League playoffs.

In 2009, the Eagles went winless, although Piper says the players never lost their spirit.

"We had a strong corps of 20 athletes and we played our hearts out," he says.

Plus, the fan base was much better, Piper says.

"Port Townsend has been a success as far as the fans is concerned," he says. "We're a two-town (Port Townsend, Chimacum) team. We get two, three hundred (fans) per game."

But with the prospective change in owners, Piper says it's a good time to assess where the team should go next.

Kris Young, a former Eagles player, says it may come to pass that a whole new team develops, one that can draw on the Sequim and Port Angeles communities.

"Our vision is to have the Sequim and Port Angeles communities unite to give our young adults and aging football veterans an opportunity to continue to dream," Young says. "With two high schools and a junior college nearby, the potential is limitless."

Reach Michael Dashiell at miked@sequimgazette.com.

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