WHS football team to begin practicing on Monday

Trojan Football workout S2.jpg
Tate Gaul of the Worthington High School football team tackles a rolling dummy during a workout Thursday afternoon. The team will begin fall practices on Monday. (Tim Middagh/The Globe)

WORTHINGTON -- Four Worthington Trojan football players put on jerseys and helmets Thursday afternoon and went through their normal September football motions behind the high school. Real fall practice for WHS won’t begin until Monday, but Godmar Gach, Tate Gaul, Daniel Pavelko and Kent Lais were happy to be out there, anyway.

Practice sessions will be unusual this year since the Minnesota State High School League moved the 2020 season from fall to spring. But the fortunate thing, say the four Trojans and head coach Gene Lais, is that very soon the whole team will be together.

“I think it’s really important to stay in shape, and kind of know what we’re going,” said Gaul.

“I think it’ll be good to build the chemistry. So we’re ready when we’ve got a game,” said Gach.

Many months will pass before the Trojans, and the rest of Minnesota high school football players, have an actual game. In one way, it’s a shame, said Coach Lais. He has witnessed two high school football games this season outside of his state, and it strikes him as ironic that while states surrounding his own are allowed to compete, Minnesota’s season is delayed.


“It’s been a perfect fall for football. The weather’s been awesome. Friday nights have been great,” said the coach.

When all the Trojans do get together again next week, they’ll mostly work on their fundamentals while installing the offense and the defense. Coach Lais said it will be somewhat similar to what colleges do for their spring practices.

“For us, there’s going to be a lot less hitting. We’ve only got one day of full pads hitting. The only thing we’re going to have full pads for is intrasquad scrimmaging,” the coach said.

Saturday, Oct. 3, is a calendar-circling day. On that day the team plans to have the lights turned on for a practice at the newly-remodeled Trojan Field, where turf has replaced grass.

All agreed that spirits sagged after the MSHSL moved football back, but Coach Lais remarked on Thursday, “They chose to look at the positive side of it.”

Positive side? Indeed. Moving the season from fall to spring allows another six months of maturation for the younger players. And, of course, they all get to be together in the fall, doing football-related activities.

“It was kind of heart-crushing (learning of the season’s move from fall to spring),” admitted Gaul. “But it just gives us more time to get better. That’s the way I look at it. It has a positive side.”


What To Read Next
Get Local