Supporting the surging Storm

Skyview student body stoked as football team plays for 4A state crown

By Paul Valencia, Columbian High School Sports Reporter



While the Skyview football team prepares to play in the state championship game, the rest of the school is getting prepared to follow the Storm to glory.

“The buzz is everywhere. Everyone is proud to be a cloud,” said junior Brad Usselman, the student body vice president. “Everyone is talking about it: ‘Who ya going to the game with?’ They want Saturday to be here now. It’s like we’ve been waiting years and years.”

Proud to be a cloud.

Skyview students, teachers, and administrators love finding new terms of affection for the Storm.

Skyview takes on Skyline — a battle for Washington’s Sky — on Saturday in the Class 4A state championship game. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. at Tacoma Dome.

Kym Tyelyn-Carlson, Skyview’s principal, does not seem worried about the outcome against the Skyline Spartans.

“Storm or Spartans? Mother Nature is always stronger than men,” Tyelyn-Carlson said.

All the talk Monday, the first day of the week following a holiday break, was football. At lunch, photos of Skyview’s semifinal victory over Lake Stevens were displayed on the video screen in the middle of campus. Signs hung from every direction: “It’s our Time.” “Playoff Fever.” “No Fear.”

“You can’t be going into a championship game without being amped out of your gourd,” Tyelyn-Carlson said. “We’ve been buzzing about NBLC. The possibility of state champs? That’s a lot of school pride.”

NBLC stands for Nothing But League Champs. It has been Skyview football’s rally cry for years. It’s been working, too. The Storm have won four in a row, and five of the past six. Skyview went to the state quarterfinals in 2006, reached the semifinals in 2009, and now has reached the finals for the first time.

Nancy Faulk, a Spanish teacher and the unofficial Queen of Spirit at Skyview, has had her “NBLC” sign up all season on her classroom windows. The L was replaced Monday morning with an S.

“Now we want to be Nothing But State Champs,” she said.

The 129 remains on the windows, too. That’s how many miles from Skyview to the Tacoma Dome.

In just two days of school after Skyview’s quarterfinal victory, Faulk organized three rooter buses for the semifinals. In the closing minutes of the Storm’s win over Lake Stevens, she was handing out permission slips to the students to have them signed and delivered this week. The faster they came in, the better the chance to get more rooter buses line up for that final game.

“The goal is to get five,” she said.

Later, though, she realized it did not matter how many buses were going to Tacoma. If students aren’t on a bus, they will be car-pooling to the dome.

“I know we’ll have a huge turnout,” Faulk said.

Faulk has sports in her blood. Her father coached Centralia football to a state title. Her brothers are the head coaches in football and boys basketball at Jesuit in Portland. She knows how to make it fun for the fans, too.

She also knows that it takes the entire school to make it special.

“The coaches do a great job of thanking the fans,” Faulk said. “They try to make the fans part of the winning process.”

She acknowledged that not every student is a sports fan. A win in September might not register with all students. But now that the Storm are in the finals, well, that is big news.

“The students who are not into sports are riding this wave of enthusiasm,” Faulk said.

Katrina Cabalfin, the student body president, even went as far as saying other schools are jealous of Skyview. She did not mean it as a negative toward the other schools. It is just that is it really cool to be a Skyview Storm this week.

“We’re so stoked,” she said.