Sertoma Classic Friday |

Sertoma Classic Friday

Staff reports

Graduating high school seniors from around the area will get another chance to play football Friday night when the 17th annual Sertoma Classic Northern Nevada all-star football game is played in Sparks.

The game, which showcases top graduating seniors from all level schools, is scheduled for a 7 p.m. kickoff at Reed High School.

Seven South Tahoe High grads, two Whittell players and seven from Douglas will be on the field playing for the West squad, with four Carson High players suiting up for the East.

The series is tied at 8-8 after last year’s thriller, won by the East, 23-20, in triple overtime.

Representing South Tahoe will be Bret Uppendahl, John Shaver, Casey Dowling, Jason Bergman, Brad Cimino, Bryan Bough and Seth Martin. Whittell will field Stephan Hambsch and Devin Apocotos. Douglas will have Troy Fontana, Kevin Lehr, Chris Griffith, Brady Ovard, Matt Stangle, James Pendergrass and Beau Kruger. Carson will feature Garret Berkich, Ryan Berkich, Paul Glass and Justin Mitchell.

“We’re really out to have a good time and showcase our talents for the last time,” said Uppendahl, who is bound for Penn and will share the quarterbacking duties with Griffith. “The only thing to prove is that the West team is better. But both teams are stacked. I just want to play for the last time with my friends and have my last high school game be a victory.”

Added Bergman, a defensive back who will play at Huron University, S.D., next season, “At first it felt weird because you’re playing with guys you’re used to lining up against. After a couple of practices, you become friends with them all. I just want to represent South Tahoe and get the most respect I can.”

South Tahoe coach Tim Jaureguito said fans shouldn’t miss the chance to see the local kids on an all-star field.

“It’s a great opportunity for the community to see the guys who have been such a big part of the program for the last four years play together one last time,” he said.

Whittell’s Hambsch, who will play defensive tackle, said he’s looking forward to the opportunity of playing against the state’s best.

“It’s a terrific chance to be with the best guys and play against the state’s upper-level players. It’s faster and I was a bit nervous at first. But it’s the same game, intense as you want to play it,” he said. “I’m not sure what to expect for playing time. But the coaches are concerned about everybody getting a chance to see good time. I just want to have a good time and have fun. That’s what I look forward to.”

U.S. Highway 395 serves as the Classic’s East-West boundary line.

The West squad, coached by Bishop Manogue’s Tony Amantea, also includes players from McQueen’s 4A state championship squad. Doug Parry of Reed is the East’s head coach.

Each school is limited to eight selections.

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