Photo by Alyssa Wood: Eatonville's No. 12 Colby Rath runs the ball into the end zone for the Eatonville Junior Cruiser youth football program's third/fourth-grade team's only touchdown of the day, Saturday. They would go on to beat the Wolverines, 6-0.
Photo by Alyssa Wood: Eatonville's No. 12 Colby Rath runs the ball into the end zone for the Eatonville Junior Cruiser youth football program's third/fourth-grade team's only touchdown of the day, Saturday. They would go on to beat the Wolverines, 6-0.

The Eatonville Junior Cruiser youth football program kicked off its 2022 season this past Saturday with great excitement among the players and spectators.

The Junior Cruisers hosted the White River Wolverines at B.W. Lyon Field.

After only having roughly 40 children turn out for the program last season, this year's club had 77 players turn out. That allowed the program to field not only its traditional two teams, a third/fourth- and fifth/sixth-grade team, but also a first/second-grade team, as well.

New organization President Ryan Watkins and his board have put in countless hours to improve the program for Eatonville’s youth.

"We are all on the same page,” Watkins said. “We want to make this program the best it can be for our kids. Our board, coaches, players and parents are here to show everyone that we are Eatonville Junior Cruisers and this is Cruiser Country.

"We had one of the largest turnouts the program has ever seen, and while that is great, it also meant we had to buy more gear to accommodate them. We went to work and made it happen,” he added.

While the day started rough for the Junior Cruisers in the first game, in which the first/second-grade team fell to the Wolverines, 40-0, the third/fourth-grade team bounced back with a 6-0 victory behind Colby Rath's 5-yard touchdown run. The fifth/sixth-grade team ended the day by falling to White River, 27-0.

The Junior Cruisers will host three more games this season at B.W. Lyon Field and invite everyone to come out and witness the making of future Eatonville High School Cruiser football players.

They will host games on Sept. 17th against Auburn-Riverside on Sept. 17, against Orting Sept. 24 and against Kent Oct. 8. The first/second-grade team plays at 9 a.m. The third/fourth-graders will play at 10:30 a.m., and the fifth/sixth-graders will wrap up the day at noon.

 

2022 Junior Cruiser Football Schedule

Sept. 10: Bonney Lake @ Bonney Lake High School

Sept. 17: Auburn-Riverside @ Eatonville High School

Sept. 24: Orting @ Eatonville High School

Oct. 1: Spanaway Lake @ Spanaway Lake High School

Oct. 8: Kent @ Eatonville High School

Oct. 22: White River @ White River High School

Oct. 29: Orting @ Orting Middle School

Nov. 5: Playoffs (If qualified)

Nov. 12: Playoffs (If qualified)