By David Mair, Staff Writer
Standing tall at 6 feet, senior Dalton Ritchey is the starting quarterback for Pacific Lutheran University’s Football Team.
Ritchey grew up loving the game of football in Onalaska, Wash., a small town about halfway between Tacoma and Portland, and played football for Onalaska High School.
Being able to play at PLU has only increased his passion for the game.
“The guys around the program are unlike any program,” Dalton said. “I can honestly say I love playing with all of them, so coming to practice and playing a game I already love is that much better.”
Since he picked up the pigskin for the Lutes three years ago, his role on the team has changed drastically.
When Ritchey was a first-year, he switched from quarterback to receiver so he could be able to help in anyway that was necessary.
During his sophomore and junior years Ritchey became starting quarterback.
Now, he is a prominent figure on the team that has built trust among the guys to the point where players come to him for advice around the offense.
PLU head coach Scott Westering has confidence in Ritchey with the on-field checks and decisions.
Currently the team is 4-2.
Its only losses in Northwest Conference and overall this season were against Linfield 14-41 and Pacific 28-31, both quality opponents.
With three games left this season, the team is ready to finish what they started back in September when they snuck out with a 35-28 win against California Lutheran University.
“We constantly strive to get better, so why should that stop?” Ritchey said. “We focus on always giving it our best shot and sometimes the games doesn’t go the way we want.”
As he wraps up his final season as a proud Lute, Ritchey wants to leave the field knowing he left it better than he found it.
A legacy is what he hopes to leave for the new guys. Specifically for the quarterbacks, so they know what it is like to play at an extremely successful level.
Ritchey wants to pour everything he has into the football tradition at PLU, and strives to be part of the group of great quarterbacks.
According to Ritchey, the experience on the football team has been one of the best in his life so far.
Through the PLU football program he has fostered long-lasting friendships, created wonderful memories and enjoyed the opportunity to play football at a high level.
“I am very blessed that God had led me down this path to this school,” Ritchey said.