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‘A dangerous word.’ After season of transition, Tigard football has … gulp … potential

Here’s our look at the Tigard Tigers of the Class 6A Three Rivers League.
Tigard.Henry Masters.Taylor Balkom

By René Ferrán

SBLive Oregon will break down every 6A, 5A and 4A team in the state leading up to the 2021 fall football season. Here’s our look at the Tigard Tigers of the Class 6A Three Rivers League.

Henry Masters photo by Taylor Balkom

TIGARD TEAM PAGE

HEAD COACH 

John Kemper, third season (12-4)

PAST 3 SEASONS

2021 (spring): 2-3 overall, 1-3 in Three Rivers 

2019: 10-1 overall, 6-0 in Three Rivers (lost in second round)

2018: 10-2 overall, 4-1 in Three Rivers (lost in quarterfinals)

ALL-LEAGUE PLAYERS DEPARTED 

OT/ILB Aden Murphy, first team offense, second team defense

RB/CB Hewitt Sullivan, first team offense, second team defense

WR/S Spencer Kuffel, honorable mention offense, honorable mention defense

QB/S Zach Chesler, honorable mention offense, honorable mention defense

WR Keenan Speer-Johnson, second team offense

PLAYERS TO WATCH 

WR/CB AJ Perez, 6-3, 175, Jr.

Perez stepped into starting roles on both sides of the ball as a sophomore and had an immediate impact, receiving all-TRL honorable mention at receiver and cornerback. “He has very good receiving skills and a good work ethic,” Kemper said. “He’s a talented player who we have high expectations for.”

WR/S Karson Boschma, 6-2, 195, Sr.

The Tigers were cautious with Boschma after he suffered a hip injury during the run-up to the spring season, limiting him to offense, where he earned all-TRL honorable mention. He’ll be a key two-way player this fall. “He has the capability to be an outstanding player on both sides of the ball for us,” Kemper said.

TE/OLB Elijah Jackman, 6-1, 230, Sr.

Jackman last season made the all-TRL second team on defense and received honorable mention on offense. A physical presence who can set the perimeter on either side of the ball, he has drawn interest from several Northwest Division II and III schools. Jackman also shined during the track season, winning the district title in the discus and placing third at the 6A Showcase. “He just continues to develop and get stronger,” Kemper said. “He needs to keep developing as a blocker, but he catches the ball well and runs routes well for a big guy.”

TE/OLB Henry Masters, 6-3, 205, Jr.

Masters, part of a loaded junior class, started making a name for himself during the spring season, bookending with Jackman on both lines and receiving all-TRL honorable mention on offense and defense. “He’s very athletic but needs to continue to develop in the weight room,” Kemper said. “But he’s another kid that, if he develops, could have quite a few offers his senior year. We’re really excited about him.”