One of the best stories of 2012 comes out of the Eugene area where the Springfield Millers (8-3) had their best season in years, finishing in the top 10 state wide at the 5A level. New Head Coach Dave Heuberger has done a phenomenal job with the kids after moving over from Marist under Frank Geske.
Heuberger went out and put together one of the best coaching staffs in the region completely resurrecting the program. Former Oregon Duck Steve Smith is running the secondary, and his son Alex Smith (6-2 175 WR/S) is one of the better sophomore athletes in the state. Coach wasn’t really hearing much of the praise as he says, ” Springfield has always had athletes they just needed some direction, and we have made sure to reinforce what is really important”.
The Millers finished 2nd to Marist in the Midwestern Conference which is there best finish in some time. The season ended after a close loss to state champion Sherwood. The Bowmen beat Springfield 42-30 at home, but the game was telling about all that the Millers have to look forward to.
Freshman QB Trever Watson (5-10 180) is a special talent, and was the only freshman in the entire state of Oregon that we had listed on our NEI All State Underclassmen list. Coach Heuberger talks about the kids intangibles, and all of the things that he does that can’t be taught. “Trever did some things that most 14 year olds aren’t supposed to do and we are excited about his future here”. He’s a tough competitor and has a huge upside even with the height factor in question.
Smith caught a couple Tds against Sherwood in the state quarterfinals, and looks like one of the top WR’s in Oregon for the 2015 class. His primary sport has been basketball, but his genes alone speak to his overall athletic ability.
Taylor Travess (5-9 165 Jr. CB/ATH) returns after earning CO Midwestern Conference Defensive Player of the Year Honors after leading the state in INT’s with 9. Coach Smith did a remarkable job with the secondary, as the kids totaled 22 interceptions over the 2012 season. Travess has been lights out and will get an opportunity to shine on offense as well in 2013.
Latrell Tinsley (5-11 190 Jr. LB/FB) returns after earning 1st team all league honors at backer, with two good sized returning starting tackles also back in Jordan Haas (6-5 255 OL) and Hunter Hastings (6-4 250 Jr. OL). Freshman WR Brayden Haas (6-2 170), the brother of Jordan, will be another special talent in the coming years. Alan Smeltzer (FB/LB) is another kid that has done very well and will continue to be in the mix.
The only losses Springfield had on the year were to #1 Sherwood, #2 Silverton, and #3 Marist. To say they played the best of the best at the 5a classification level would be accurate. The Millers return 7 defensive starters and a host of talent on offense, so the community support has picked up a great deal.
Heubereger has done things the right way and always puts the kids first. More then anything the belief system within the program has completely changed and there is excitement in the air. Springfield will be one of the top ranked teams in the state coming into next season, and we look forward to seeing a host of these athletes at our Elite Events in the coming months.