YAKIMA — Six soccer players from the North Olympic Peninsula will represent the state’s western side on Saturday when the all-star soccer game The Earl Barden Classic returns after a two-year hiatus caused by the pandemic.
The game will be played at East Valley High School with a 1 p.m. kick-off. The game will be streamed live at tinyurl.com/PDN-EarlBarden22 for $9.99.
The all-state football game for Class 2A, 1A, and B players began in 1995 with an effort to showcase the game by small school athletes.
Forks’ Dalton Kilmer, an All-Pacific League first-team pick at wide receiver and second-team defensive back for Class 2B quarterfinalists Spartans, is on the West roster.
Kilmer is joined by three members of the Nisqually League champions East Jefferson Rivals: Nisqually League MVP Logan Massie, a running back and linebacker, along with offensive/defensive linemen Marshall Graves and Chris Fair, also Nisqually League first-team picks .
Port Angeles running back/defensive back/returner Daniel Cable, an All-Olympic League first-team pick and selected as the All-Peninsula Football MVP by the Peninsula Daily News last December, will also play for the West.
Cable recently signed a letter of intent to play at George Fox University.
Quilcene’s Kevin Alejo, a running back/wide receiver/defensive back for second-placed Rangers’ Tier 1B team, will also play for the West roster.
Forks head coach Trevor Highfield explained that selection for the game isn’t just about athletic talent.
“Coaches nominate players who then go into a pool; For team selection, they’re looking for high-level athletes with great character and a good academic record,” Highfield said.
“Dalton will have a great time. This is a great opportunity for him. The All-Star Game also helps develop the person he’s becoming and I’ve watched him grow.”
Highfield said he couldn’t think of a better person to represent the Spartans
“I’m so proud of him,” he said.
The five area players spent the week preparing for Saturday’s game.
The head coaches for the 2022 Earl Barden Classic will be Royal’s Wiley Allred for East and North Kitsap’s Jeff Weible for West.
Allred acquired the Royal Knight football program in 1999 and ran one of the most dominant small school programs in the state.
Allred for the East are backing Royal’s Jeremy Scroggins, Connell’s Wayne Riner and Goldendale’s Aaron Cochran.
Weible is one of the most successful coaches in 2A football. He has led the North Kitsap Vikings to championship titles as head coach in both football and baseball. Weible for the West are supported by Viking assistants Dave Snyder and Chris Richardson and Mike Christensen from Toledo.
Sports reporter/columnist Michael Carman can be contacted at [email protected]