Randy Diocares did it all during his athletic career at Kodiak High School.
Touchdowns. Check. Layups. Check. Strikeouts. Check.
Long before his high school tour, Diocares was a footnote in football history here on the island
Wearing the No. 12 Arctic Physical Therapy jersey, Diocares ran in the first touchdown in the inaugural Kodiak Football League game on Sept. 3, 1999, at Baranof Park.
It was glossed over in one sentence in a Kodiak Daily Mirror article, and probably not even the island’s most diehard gridiron fans remember the event. The article doesn’t say how long the touchdown run was or does it describe the play.
“Then it was time for football, and the Bears didn’t waste any time getting things started as Randy Diocares ran the ball in for the first touchdown,” a sentence in the Sept. 7, 1999 article read. A photo of Diocares toting the pigskin appeared on the front page.
Diocares wasn’t done, as he capped the scoring with another touchdown to seal Arctic’s 19-0 victory over the Mack’s Maulers.
Michael Odell — another familiar name in Kodiak sports history — scored Arctic’s other touchdown, which came in the first quarter. Mark LeDoux — the youngest son of Kodiak Island Borough School District Superintendent Larry LeDoux — punched in the extra point.
“I’m real proud of the guys,” Arctic coach Tony Cortes told the Mirror. “The whole team worked hard in all four quarters. We had a bunch of guys who stood their ground.”
And with that, Diocares’ stardom started. He appeared routinely on the sports pages of the Mirror up until graduating in 2008.
He scored many more touchdowns while helping lead the Bears to appearances in the Division II state championship game in 2006 and 2007 — both losses to Soldotna.
Diocares broke out as a tight end in 2007, hauling in 33 receptions for 631 yards and five touchdowns. He posted a postseason line of 16 receptions, 300 yards and five scores in the Bears’ two playoff games.
That season is one of the finest produced by a Kodiak pass catcher.
“At tight end, he has made a huge difference,” first-year head coach David Simmerman told the Daily Mirror in 2007. “He is a very good athlete with great hands and is very quick. He is not shaped like a tight end, but he can run and catch. He has all the aspects of a tight end.”
He forged an unforgettable connection with senior quarterback Jimmy Eggemeyer, who went on to become a national champion wrestler for NAIA Southern Oregon University.
“I know what he is looking for and where he is going to throw,” Diocares told the Mirror in 2007. “I just got to find the open spots.”
Diocares spent winters on the hardwood and springs on the diamond.
As a pitcher for the Bears, he won a program-best 13 games while fanning 69 batters in 85 innings. He posted a sparkling 5-0 record in the 2007 season, which ended with a fourth-place finish at the state tournament. He returned for his senior season and was named to the Southcentral Conference first team.
Diocares, who recently became a father, remains in Kodiak and is routinely seen playing City League basketball during the winter months.
But, he will always be remembered as the island’s first football player to push the pigskin into the end zone.