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Tigers plan to learn on the field

Linebacker Justis Tarpely (left) and junior quarterback Kenji Teramura are two important returning starters for the Ontario Tiger football team. (The Enterprise/Pat Caldwell)

ONTARIO – At first glance, it could appear as if the 2018 edition of the Ontario High School varsity football team faces a rebuilding year.

The Tigers will open their 4A season Aug. 31 against Mazama High School of Klamath Falls without two key starters from last season – quarterback Mike Mejia and running back Ethan Kameshiga. Both graduated.

Coach Erik Johnson, though, isn’t pushing the panic button. He said his team is youthful, but a core group of varsity veterans return.

“We do return our line. All but one of them is back,” said Johnson.

On defense, Johnson said the Tigers will return five starters, including veteran middle linebacker Justis Tarpely.

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