EVERETT — Third-year Cascade coach Shane Keck knew that re-establishing a winning culture within the Bruins football program would be no easy task.
Prior to Keck taking the helm, Cascade had experienced just one winning season since 2009. Moreover, Keck was the program’s third different coach in three years, and the fourth in five years.
“We really struggled early on to get kids to buy in, work hard in the offseason, show up all the time and do the things that winning football programs do,” Keck said.
But over time, Keck has seen a shift.
“There’s some accountability,” Keck said. “When guys aren’t there, other guys are holding them accountable. There’s an expectation now (that) you need to show up at whatever function we’re doing and you need to be in. And it’s been really cool to see.”
The results have shown on the field.
After just five wins combined over the previous two seasons, Cascade is off to its first 2-0 start since 2013. The Bruins have outscored their first two opponents by a combined 76-7 margin, including last week’s 46-0 win over Everett in the annual Battle of Broadway rivalry game.
Keck said the early-season success helps further the winning culture he’s strived to create.
“You get a couple of early wins and that expectation — that environment — really starts to set in and be about who you are,” Keck said.
The Bruins look to continue their strong start Friday night when they host Glacier Peak in the Wesco 4A opener for both teams.
“Glacier Peak’s been a perennial playoff team, so it doesn’t open easy for us,” Keck said, adding, “I think a key for us is playing our brand of football and continuing to limit the mistakes.”
GLACIER PEAK at CASCADE
When: 8 p.m., Friday
Where: Everett Memorial Stadium
Radio: KRKO 1380 AM
Last week: Glacier Peak (1-1) beat Snohomish 28-14; Cascade (2-0) beat Everett 46-0
About the Grizzlies: Glacier Peak bounced back from a season-opening loss to Kentwood with the program’s sixth consecutive win over rival Snohomish. Senior receiver Bo Burns surpassed 100 yards receiving for the second straight game, hauling in four receptions for 109 yards and three touchdowns. Junior quarterback Ayden Ziomas has completed 68.3 percent of his passes this season for 498 yards, six touchdowns and one interception.
About the Bruins: Coming off a 46-0 rout of Everett in the annual Battle of Broadway rivalry game, Cascade is 2-0 for the first time since 2013 and has outscored its first two opponents by a combined 76-7 margin. The Bruins have totaled 545 yards rushing in their Wing-T attack, averaging 11.6 yards per carry. Cascade’s defense has been just as impressive, having allowed its only points on a fourth-quarter touchdown in a season-opening blowout win over Inglemoor.
Herald pick: Glacier Peak
MONROE at KAMIAK
When: 7 p.m., Friday
Where: Mariner H.S.
Last week: Monroe (2-0) beat Sedro-Woolley 36-7; Kamiak (1-1) lost to Oak Harbor 48-14
About the Bearcats: Monroe’s defense didn’t allow a touchdown until the fourth quarter in last week’s non-league win over Sedro-Woolley. Bearcats senior lineman Josh Jerome, an Eastern Washington University commit, sacked Sedro-Woolley’s quarterback for a safety and also had a fumble recovery. Monroe senior Isaiah Lewis rushed for 103 yards and two touchdowns, pushing his season totals to 386 yards and six touchdowns. Sophomore receiver Efton Chism III has four touchdown catches this season, with two apiece in the Bearcats’ first two games.
About the Knights: Kamiak senior Ben Barton surpassed 100 yards rushing for the second consecutive game in last week’s non-league loss to Oak Harbor. The Knights have struggled on offense in their first two contests, scoring just 14 points in each game. Kamiak lost 56-7 to Monroe in last year’s matchup between the two teams.
Herald pick: Monroe
MARINER at LAKE STEVENS
When: 7 p.m., Friday
Where: Lake Stevens H.S.
Last week: Mariner (1-1) beat Marysville Getchell 35-6; Lake Stevens (1-1) lost to Arlington 54-28
About the Marauders: Mariner bounced back from a season-opening loss to Oak Harbor with a blowout non-league win over Marysville Getchell. Sophomore running back Amory Brown had a receiving touchdown and a rushing score as the Marauders cruised to a 35-0 third-quarter lead. Mariner is looking to avenge last year’s 48-7 loss to Lake Stevens.
About the Vikings: Lake Stevens’ 26-game regular-season winning streak was snapped last week with a 26-point non-league loss to Arlington. Vikings senior quarterback Conor Bardue tossed four interceptions in the loss, completing just 44.7 percent of his passes for 287 yards and three touchdowns. Senior receiver Austin Murren had a career-high performance with eight catches for 139 yards.
MARYSVILLE GETCHELL at No. 9 ARLINGTON
When: 7 p.m., Friday
Where: Arlington H.S.
Last week: Marysville Getchell (0-2) lost to Mariner 35-6; Arlington (2-0) beat Lake Stevens 54-28
About the Chargers: Marysville Getchell was held scoreless until the fourth quarter of last week’s non-league loss to Mariner. The Chargers have lost to Arlington in each of the teams’ previous three meetings, including a 47-26 defeat last year.
About the Eagles: Ninth-ranked Arlington snapped Wesco 4A powerhouse Lake Stevens’ 26-game regular-season winning streak last week with a 26-point non-league victory over the Vikings. The Eagles intercepted Lake Stevens star quarterback Conor Bardue four times and topped 400 yards of offense for the second consecutive game. Junior quarterback Anthony Whitis has completed 65.4 percent of his passes this season for 562 yards, seven touchdowns and no interceptions. Junior receiver Dylan Simmons had five catches for 150 yards and a touchdown last week.
Herald pick: Arlington
KING’S at No. 1 ARCHBISHOP MURPHY
When: 7 p.m., Friday
Where: Archbishop Murphy H.S.
Last week: King’s (0-2) lost to Lakeside 44-39; Archbishop Murphy (2-0) beat Bishop Blanchet 54-7
About the Knights: King’s was the only Cascade Conference team to play Archbishop Murphy last season, losing 38-0 to the Wildcats. After managing just seven points and 152 total yards in their season-opening loss to Burlington-Edison, the Knights totaled 39 points and 528 yards in last week’s shootout loss to Lakeside. King’s senior Brennon Blevins had three catches for 157 yards and two touchdowns, and also rushed for 65 yards and two scores.
About the Wildcats: Archbishop Murphy’s defense yielded just 97 total yards in last week’s non-league win over Bishop Blanchet. The top-ranked Wildcats amassed 312 yards rushing, averaging 10.8 yards per carry. Murphy senior Kyler Gordon, an elite college prospect, rushed for 137 yards and a touchdown on seven carries and added a 99-yard touchdown reception.
What’s at stake: Archbishop Murphy and King’s have won a combined seven outright Cascade Conference titles in the past nine seasons.
Herald pick: Archbishop Murphy