MOUNT VERNON — Trevor Beaner and Oscar Acosta spent the previous three seasons suiting up for the Anacortes football team.
When Anacortes made the decision not to field a varsity team this year, the two suddenly found themselves with nowhere to play.
“It was stressful,” Acosta said. “There were days where I thought I’d played my last year of high school football.”
Beaner added he felt discouraged as well, but said he was optimistic his high school football career wasn’t about to come to an end.
The Anacortes coaches and administration went into search mode, hoping to find a local high school willing to adopt the two seniors.
As it turned out, the only viable option was Mount Vernon, so the pair of headed east and began playing for a school they don’t attend.
“It was just a couple days after the announcement there wasn’t going to be a varsity team, we found out we could play at Mount Vernon,” Acosta said.
Administrators from both schools worked closely on a plan. Eventually it fell into place and both players were soon working out with the Bulldogs — Beaner at running back and outside linebacker, and Acosta at wide receiver and outside linebacker.
“I just kept putting myself in their situation,” Mount Vernon coach Nic Vasilchek said, “if it were my senior year and I couldn’t play football and how awful that would be.
“Our athletic director, Chris Oliver, was huge in getting this done. He gave them a fighting chance. He really went above and beyond to make sure they could play. It’s really impressive all the work that went into them playing for us. There was a lot of effort by a lot of different people. Coach Chris Hunter (of Anacortes) was very helpful.”
Vasilchek said he didn’t look at the statistics of his newly acquired players.
“I wanted them to come in here with a blank slate,” he said. “I wanted a smooth transfer. I wanted their start to be fresh. They were going to have the same chance to earn a spot as everyone else.”
Both players were pleased with the situation and said they were immediately treated like teammates by the Bulldogs.
Both also both admitted to being a little nervous. Those nerves soon left as the two got down to playing football.
“We felt super welcomed,” Acosta said. “They treated us very well and everyone was super supportive.”
“We were immediately part of the team,” Beaner added. “They got to know us. It has really been great.”
Vasilchek wouldn’t have had it any other way. He said both Beaner and Acosta have fit in nicely.
“It turned out well for all involved,” he said. “They have the chance to play football.”
While Acosta lives in Mount Vernon and commutes to school in Anacortes, Beaner commutes from Anacortes.
“I’m getting used to it,” Beaner said of the drive. “I’m also getting used to my gas tank always being down.”
Bottom line, both players are excited about being able to play their senior year, regardless of the team.
“If we hadn’t been able to play, it would have been really depressing,” Beaner said. “But we got the chance here at Mount Vernon. Everything happens for a reason.”