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South King County Colts open season Saturday at Kitsap Bears
Armed with a new coach and a new attitude, the South King County Colts semi-pro football team will launch its inaugural Pacific Football League campaign at 6 p.m. Saturday in Silverdale against the Kitsap County Bears.
The league opener is the first test for the 2011 Colts, who did not play any preseason games. The Bears come into the game with one preseason win under their belt, a 17-0 victory over the Renton Ravens out of the Western Washington Football Alliance (WWFA).
The Colt's come into the 2011 campaign under the leadership of new head coach Jeff Scott, who has experience building winning programs with the King County Jaguars and Puget Sound Titans. Under Scott's guidance the team will emphasize solid team play, recognizing good programs win on team play, rather than relying on one or two individual athletes to carry the team.
"I really love football," said Scott after Tuesday's practice. "I really love it at this level - the semi-pro level. This is football in its purest form for adults. These guys are fathers, brothers and bread makers for the family that still find time to come out and do something they love. The positives always outweigh the negatives."
Scott said he was hoping for a positive result tomorrow, but admits that hunting down the Bears won't be easy.
"It will definitely be a challenge," he said. "They are a real good organization and they have a lot of my ex players. The real measure is how we handle the challenge."
Both teams experienced success last season, with the Colts stringing together a 7-3 record.
The Bears competed in the North American Football League last year and lost to the Bellingham Bulldogs in the league's title game. The Bears wrapped up last season with a convincing win in Las Vegas in the Far West Bowl Championship Game against the East Las Vegas Cobras.
Three players from the Bears' 2010 squad have moved on to various forms of professional football. Wide receiver Jackie Thomas, who was the Bears leading receiver the past two seasons, signed with the Florida Scorpions of the American Professional Football League. Also gone is Mike Bush who earned a spot with the Kent Predators in the Indoor Football League. The Bears will also miss Demarcus Robinson, a catalyst on defense and the kick return game, who signed with the Cleveland Gladiators of the Arena Football League.
This year, however, Bears quarterback Nick Lafontaine has been able to make some noise with wideout Dru "Bubba" Jenkins in the preseason. Lafontaine and Jenkins hooked up a bomb touchdown against the Ravens and Jenkins also picked off four passes on defense.
Colts owner Tim Reynolds expects his skill position players to be ready and capable of producing from the start.
"We have high expectations this year," Reynolds said. "Our skill position players are pretty talented. We have a lot of strength at defensive back and wide receiver."
The colts expect to make noise with running back Ryan Reynolds and wide receiver Anthony Mountgomery. Ultimately, however, Scott reiterated the program's emphasis on team play. that
"It's good programs that win, not good athletes," said Scott. "Everything out here is going to be earned."
Kickoff is at 6 pm at Silverdale Stadium. Tickets are $10 at the door. Kids, senior citizens and military personnel are $5 each.