The Indians have plenty of incentive in their electric charge:
Scappoose, back from the first round of Class 4A state, fell at Class 5A state quarterfinalist St. Helens, Class 4A runner-up Cottage Grove, play-in rounder Valley Catholic and at home to quarterfinalist Astoria by an average of eight points last year, and all but Astoria, as luck would have it, are home games in an identical schedule this fall.
"It's a huge motivator for us," said Tribe quarterback Jerad Toman, a 5-foot-10, 160-pound returning senior all-leaguer with running back Jimmy Jones (5-11, 190), wide receiver Tevin Jeannis (6-1, 157) and linebacker Ross Parsons (6-1, 190). "Ever since the first day of our workouts, we made it a priority to work harder than any team out there and get revenge on every team we played last season. We all knew that we had to earn it: It wouldn't just be handed to us, we had to earn our season, and it all started with the motto of the Revenge Tour."
The Indians, eager to replace Astoria for their fourth Cowapa League crown in six years, won five games by a 27-point average last fall and gave up fewer points than in their 2015 state championship appearance.
"We are working for perfection," said five-time league co-Coach of the Year Sean McNabb, who shared the honor with Astoria's Howard Rub as the Fishermen won their first title in seven years. "That's how we practice. Perfection is inevitably impossible, but if we shoot for perfection and come up short, we will be pretty darn good."
Scappoose's 18 seniors are six fewer than in 2015.
Toman, Andrew DeGrande (junior, 6-1, 210) and Jakobi Kessi (sophomore, 6-1, 183) lend their talents at quarterback. Jones and Jack Eggers (6-1, 165) lead the running backs, and the Tribe's wide receivers are loaded with Jeannis and seniors Willy Johman (6-1, 175), Benji Davidson (6-1, 160), Jake Gray (6-1, 157), Joe Abbott (6-0, 177), Tristan Miller (6-0, 168), Ryan Warner (5-9, 140) and Steven Hensley (5-9, 140).
"I'd say last season we could have been a lot better," Jeannis said. "This year I feel like we are way more in line with the defensive and offensive sides of things."
Parsons and seniors Josh Stofiel (6-3, 291), Nate Maller (6-0, 195), Jesse Porter (6-1, 191) and Trey Bispham (6-0, 183) strengthen the offensive line and front seven.
Jones, Gray, Jeannis, Miller, Warner and Hensley will look to keep receivers guessing in the secondary.
The Tribe's season-opening road trip schedules them for a 7 p.m. game at back-to-back Provincial AAA semifinalist New Westminster Secondary School on Friday, 294 miles north in British Columbia, Canada.
"They will be tough," McNabb said. "They had a really good lower-level team last season, and [they have] some good players back."
The Hyacks will feature all-provincial teamers in senior offensive/defensive linemen Isaiah James (6-0, 270) and Yanni Angelopoulos (5-10, 255), junior quarterback/defensive back Kinsale Philip (6-0, 185) and junior tight end/defensive end Evan Nolli (6-2, 245).
The Seven-Mile War, where Scappoose will look to avoid a second loss in a row to visiting St. Helens, which graduated six all-state seniors in a 25-player Class of 2017, is set for Sept. 8.
Cottage Grove, Class 4A Coach of the Year Gary Roberts, all-state senior wide receivers Jacob Woods (5-9, 170) and Hayden Glenn (a 6-0, 160 defensive back in the same light) and center Cooper Ladd (5-11, 185) are next to visit on Sept. 15.
The Tribe will face a perilous three-game home stretch (at quarterfinalist Banks on Oct. 6, at home against Valley Catholic on Oct. 12 and at senior all-state kicker Andrew Schauermann and Astoria on Oct. 20), from which one of the three will likely survive for the league crown.
SEASON OUTLOOK: The Indians, with just as many seniors as Astoria and more returning all-leaguers (Seaside matches Scappoose with four) and four of their five toughest games at home, have to be the league favorite, but the championship race will stay close into the final weeks of the regular season.
SCAPPOOSE AT NEW WESTMINSTER
Where: British Columbia, Canada
When: 7 p.m. Friday
Back-to-back: The Class 4A first-round Indians can beat the back-to-back Provincial AAA semifinalist Hyacks for the second year in a row
Coach: Sean McNabb (18th year)
Classification: Class 4A, Cowapa League
2016 finish: 5-5 overall, 3-2 Cowapa League (Second in league, reached first round of state)
Jerad Toman, sr., QB, 5-10, 160
Jack Eggers, sr., RB/LB, 6-1, 182
Jimmy Jones, sr., RB/DB, 5-11, 190
Willy Lohman, sr., WR/LB, 6-1, 179
Benji Davidson, sr., WR/K, 6-1, 173
Jake Gray, sr., WR/DB, 6-1, 157
Tevin Jeannis, sr., WR/DB, 6-1, 168
Joe Abbott, sr., WR/DL, 6-0, 177
Tristan Miller, sr., WR/DB, 6-0, 172
Ryan Warner, sr., WR/DB, 5-9, 140
Josh Stofiel, sr., OL/DL, 6-3, 291
Liam McMullen, jr., OL/DL, 6-4, 235
Nate Maller, sr., OL/RB 6-0, 195
Jesse Porter, sr., OL/LB, 6-1, 191
Ross Parsons, sr., OL/LB, 6-1, 190
Trey Bispham, sr., OL/DL, 6-0, 183
Andrew DeGrande, jr., QB/LB, 6-1, 210
Matt Roth, jr., RB/LB, 6-1, 207
DeVaughn Aikhionbare, jr., RB/DB, 5-10, 183
Gavin Larson, jr., WR/DL, 6-5,197
Mason Smiens, jr., WR/DB, 6-1, 151
Connor McNabb, jr., WR/DB, 5-11, 177
Brendyn Nollette, jr., WR/DB, 5-8, 125
Terrence Lewis, jr., DL/OL, 6-1, 245
Tommy McKedy, so., OL/DL, 6-4, 279
Zeddy Jamerson, sr., RB/DL, 6-2, 193
Steven Hensley, sr., WR/DB, 5-9, 147
Cole Davis, sr., 6-2, 242
Bret Couch, jr., OL/DL, 6-3, 212
Grant Briley, jr., OL/DL, 5-11, 200
Quincy Cleveland, so., 6-1, 230
Dylan Lillard, so., 6-1, 205
Jakobi Kessi, so., QB/S, 5-10, 183
Easton Decker, so., RB/LB, 5-9, 170
Devon Doak, so., RB/LB, 5-10, 160
Kawika Napaa, so., RB/S, 5-8, 150
Thomas Greiner, so., WR/CB, 5-8, 140
Blake Morkert, so., WR/CB, 5-10, 150
Connor MacLachlan, so., WR/SS, 5-9, 165
Andrew Padilla, so., WR/CB, 5-8, 190
Slater Smiens, so., WR/DL, 6-5, 180
Ben Anicker, so., WR/S, 5-11, 160
Ricardo Gonzalez, so., WR/DB, 5-11, 150
Colton Frates, so., WR/FS, 5-7, 130
Ryan Lamma, so., OL/DL, 6-0, 170
Jerico Archer, so., OL/DL, 6-2, 230
Robert Guajardo, so., OL/DL, 5-9, 220
Cole Hill, so., OL/DL, 6-3, 175
Connor Havlik, so., 5-10, 170
Drake Kramer, so., 5-9, 155
Ben Volinski , so., 5-8, 150
Jese Blundell, so., 5-10, 165
Jackson Lehman, so., 5-10, 224
Trevor Jackson, so., 5-9, 160
Sept. 1 Scappoose at New Westminster, 7 p.m., British Columbia, Canada
Sept. 8 St. Helens at Scappoose, 7 p.m.
Sept. 15 Cottage Grove at Scappoose, 7 p.m.
Sept. 22 Seaside at Scappoose, 7 p.m. *
Sept. 29 Scappoose at Tillamook, 7 p.m. *
Oct. 6 Scappoose at Banks, 7 p.m. *
Oct. 12 Valley Catholic at Scappoose, 7 p.m. *
Oct. 20 Scappoose at Astoria, 7 p.m. *
* Cowapa League game