The last time Whatcom County football games were played, Lynden walked off the Tacoma Dome floor with its third consecutive Class 2A state championship, and Mount Baker left the same day on the same floor in despair following a loss in the 1A title game.
Now after an all-too-long offseason, football across the county returns tonight with several intriguing matchups on tap for Week 1.
Headlining the card is a game between Lynden and King’s, two top 10-ranked teams in their respective classes. The Lions enter the season ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press Washington State Preseason Class 2A Poll while King’s is ranked No. 8 in the 1A poll.
And these teams have plenty of history.
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Lynden’s last loss, which happened 27 straight wins ago, was against King’s in an impromptu game in Shoreline to open 2012. The Lions got revenge last year during the Emerald City Kickoff Classic at Husky Stadium. The rubber match starts tonight at 7 p.m. in Lynden.
Fans will also get their first look at both the Bellingham and Squalicum football programs under their new head coaches. Ted Flint has taken over the Red Raiders, and Nick Lucey is with the Storm. Bellingham has opted to play an independent football schedule this fall but maintains its two rivalry games. The first is tonight against Squalicum at 7 p.m. at Civic Stadium.
Mount Baker, which opens the season ranked No. 7 in the 1As, faces a tough test against Sedro-Woolley, which made the Class 2A State Playoffs last fall for the first time in over 20 years.
The Mountaineers only return four starters, but will undoubtedly be looking for a fast start to the season. They host the Cubs at 7 p.m. in Deming.
Nooksack Valley heads on the road to play the first of four tough matchups to open its 2014 campaign. The Pioneers, who boast a number of seniors, have high expectations. They take on Anacortes at 7 p.m.
The final two games include Lynden Christian at Omak and Meridian at Hoquiam, and both the Trojans and Lyncs are hoping to get off to a strong start.