High School Athletic Directors Gear Up for Fall Season


Yelm and Rainier high schools are gearing up for the fall sports seasons with practices starting later this month.

Both high schools anticipate a great season of fall sports.


Yelm High School

For the fall season, football starts the earliest, at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 18, in Yelm High School’s Performing Arts Center.

The rest of the practices will begin on Monday, Aug. 23.

The runners for cross county will line up on the starting line at 10 a.m. in the Yelm High School stadium. The girl soccer players will begin their footwork at 8 a.m. in the Yelm High School stadium, with another practice at 6 p.m. Volleyball players will set spikes starting at 9 a.m. in the Yelm High School gym, with another practice at noon the same day and place. And boys tennis will line up their serves at 2:30 p.m. at the Yelm High School tennis courts.

Rob Hill, Yelm athletic director, said all athletes have to be registered through registermyathlete.com before the first day of practice.

“They’ll go online, fill out everything they need to and submit,” Hill said. “If they are Running Start, (they) have extra paperwork. If they’re homeschooled, they’ll have extra paperwork. Transfer students will have extra paperwork. And then they also have to turn in a physical.”

Athletes late to the game still have a chance to sign up, Hill said.

“They can sign up late, but it depends on how late,” he said. “If it’s a day or two, it could work. If you get in a couple weeks late, then you start missing competitions and that will be up to a coach, probably.”

The district is still waiting on new guidance from the department of health and the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association for COVID-19-related regulations.

“I’m excited to be back to a normal schedule,” Hill said, adding he hopes incoming regulations don’t hamper the season. “I’m excited to see faces in the stands. As of now, there are no adjustments. …  It’s going to be so exciting to have Friday night lights again, to have people come out to girls soccer and a gym filled with people cheering for volleyball. That’s probably the biggest thing I’m excited about: getting our community back on campus and watching our kids perform.”

Hill said Yelm High School athletics wants to recruit versatile athletes who work hard and have the right outlook.

“My choice is always multi-sport athletes,” he said. “Our programs try to push multi-sport athletes. Being a school like Yelm, we need our athletes to do as many sports as possible. We want athletes that can control the two controllables — attitude and effort. That’s what you control every day when you get up. That’s what we want out on the field.”


Rainier High School

New Rainier High School Athletic Director Rob Henry said students will need to have all their paperwork turned in for the fall season on the same day.

“Students who plan to participate in sports need to have an up-to-date physical on file and must complete our athletic packet,” Henry said in an email to the Nisqually Valley News.

The packet can be picked up at the high school office or on the district’s website. Henry said the athletic secretary will be in the building on Aug. 18 to accept the required paperwork.

Below is a list of times for the first practice of fall sports:

• Football practice begins at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug.18, in the old gym at Rainier High School.

• Cross country practice begins at 9 a.m. Monday, Aug. 23, in front of the Rainier High School office.

• Volleyball practice runs from 7-9 a.m. and 5-7 p.m. Monday, Aug. 23, in the new gym at Rainier High School. Athletes are expected to be at both practices. Masks are required for indoor activities.

• Cheer practice for the team that was selected during summer tryouts will begin at 3:45 p.m. Monday, Aug. 30, in the back of Rainier High School. Masks are required for indoor activities.


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