State football notebook: Wearing No. 44 means something at Woodinville

The jersey number is in honor of Parker Moore, who was killed in 2014. Jake Baillie and Jared Eisenbarth share the honor this year.

To wear the No. 44 jersey in the Woodinville High School football program is more of a commentary on the character inside the jersey.

This season, seniors Jake Baillie and Jared Eisenbarth proudly share No. 44. It is the third season that wearing that jersey has meant so much more than just a number.

The program rallies around the theme “44 Strong” in honor of former Falcon H-back and linebacker Parker Moore, a 2013 graduate, who died after being stabbed at a 7-Eleven store in McMinnville, Ore., on Nov. 15, 2014. Moore, 20, was a sophomore on the Linfield College football team at the time of his death. He wore No. 44 in high school.

Eisenbarth wore Moore’s No. 44 in the road white jerseys and Baillie donned Moore’s No. 44 in home green.

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“He really made people want to strive to be their best,” Eisenbarth said. “That’s what we like to continue on every day. Emotionally, just the brotherly bond, it has brought the team together closer.”

Dylan Axelson, a redshirt-freshman defensive back at Washington State, played alongside Moore, and the 2016 Woodinville graduate was the first recipient of the No. 44 jersey.

“When I was a little sophomore, Dylan Axelson took me under his wing, and he really showed me the ropes and really the program morals and Falcon core principles that we have,” Eisenbarth said. “It’s about being dedicated, trustworthy and all that. Those were the same characteristics that Parker had and followed those Falcon core principles to a ‘T.’

“It’s just being that role-model guy and being able to leave an impact on others, that’s the key.”

Saturday in the Class 4A sate final, Baillie was representing Moore in the home greens.

“He was a great player here and he did a lot of great things,” Baillie said. “We’re just trying to carry on what he did. Wearing his number with Jared is a great honor. It’s something the whole team and me and Jared have really taken to heart. It’s something I think about every day.

“He was such a great player and such a great person to this community. He did so much. Being able to carry on that legacy is a true honor. I think it’s just always in our hearts constantly as we’re playing.”

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