Bulldogs strive for first homecoming victory in 3 years

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Daily Press Staff

If you go

What: MCHS football vs. Rawlins

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Where: Moffat County High School, 900 Finley Lane

Notes: The game is MCHS' homecoming

Call: 970-824-7036

Projected starters

Moffat County High School

OFFENSE:

QB Matt Linsacum

RB Halen Raymond

RB Pablo Salcido

WB Jasen Kettle

WR Scott Mann

TE Chet Harvey

LT Casey Martin

LG Cody Adams

C Jeremiah Gordon

RG Gage Spears

RT Angelo Raftopoulas

DEFENSE:

DT Ethan Robinson

DT Justin Benedict

NG Hunter Zellers

LB Lyle Schaffner

LB Todd Stewart

LB Nathan Tomlin

LB Jordan Wilson

LB Frank Archuleta

CB Alex McCoy

CB Aaron Nielson

FS Scott Mann

Rawlins High School

OFFENSE:

QB Jonathon Castillo

FB Trey Jebens

HB Levi Gale

HB Noah Archuleta

WR Scott Frost

TE Jesse Castilla

LT Clayton McSpadden

LG Ryley Dawson

C Kyle Hickman

RG Christian Moore

RT Jason Phillips

DEFENSE:

DE Jason Phillips

DT Clayton McSpadden

DT Kyle Hickman

DE Ryley Dawson

LB Levi Gale

LB Jon Jolly

LB Karl Fagnant

LB Trey Jebens

CB Jonathon Castillo

CB Randy Anderson

SS Jesse Castillo

At a glance

Moffat County High School

Coach: Kip Hafey, seventh season with Bulldogs

2008 record: 2-4 overall, 2-3 Western Slope League

Opp.W/L (overall): 16-21

PPG: 23.8

Opp. PPG: 34.7

Streak: lost one

Career record at Moffat County: 40-32

Hafey vs. Rawlins: 6-0

Hafey's keys to victory:

• Time of possession. Because both offenses are geared toward the running game, Hafey said the Bulldogs need to win the battle of the clock to keep Eagle Valley off the field.

• Turnovers. Hafey said if his defense can create turnovers by the Devils, and quiet the Eagle Valley homecoming crowd, his team's chance of a victory increases.

• Third-down stops. The Bulldogs gave up too many first downs in third-and-long situations last week, a trend Hafey said he wants to see end this week.

Rawlins High School

Coach: Travis Moore, second season with Panthers

2008 record: 2-3 overall, 0-2 East Division (Wyo. - 4A)

Opp. W/L overall: 12-15

PPG: 3.4

Opp. PPG: 19.6

Streak: lost three

Career record at Rawlins: 3-10

Moore vs. MCHS: 0-1

Moore's keys to victory:

• Ball control. Moore said the Outlaws need to chew up the clock against Moffat County to keep the Bulldogs' offense off the field.

• Turnovers. Coming out on the plus side of turnovers, Moore said, is key to not making mental mistakes.

• Defense. The game of football is simple: The team that scores the most points wins.

Moore said his defense needs to play tough and stop the Bulldogs from scoring.

Friday's game against visiting Rawlins, Wyo., will mark the third consecutive homecoming game for the Moffat County High School football team.

After a mixed bag of results from the first two, this Friday, the Bulldogs are happy to finally be playing host.

"I'll tell you what, it's big," Bulldogs Coach Kip Hafey said. "It's really big. The kids are really focused this week."

Moffat County hasn't claimed a win in their last three homecoming games, meaning every player on the team has yet to taste victory during their annual party.

So, the key to a good homecoming game for the Bulldogs this year is the opponent.

Schedule a tough team, and a fourth consecutive loss upsets the crowd.

Or, look for a team you can beat up on, and let the celebration begin.

Enter Rawlins High School.

The Broncos have never beaten the Bulldogs with Hafey at the helm.

In fact, the games have been lopsided contests in favor of this year's host.

The Bulldogs are 6-0 against Rawlins, with Hafey's boys outscoring the Broncos, 233-20, with four shutouts, for a per-game average score of 39-3.

The Broncos are 2-3 this season overall, coming off of three consecutive shutout losses.

"Moffat County is a perennially tough team," Rawlins Coach Travis Moore said. "But we are running on a philosophy this season that every team we play is the best team. Every game we play is like the Super Bowl."

Despite his team's dominance of the Broncos, Hafey isn't letting them overlook the fact that the greatest upset stories are built on these types of games.

"We learned from last week that it doesn't matter what your record is," Hafey said. "With where we're at right now as a team, we're not good enough to overlook anybody. I think our kids understand that."

Game planning:

The coaches didn't exchange any game film this week, with Hafey relying on the information given by the coaching staff of the Broncos' opposition. Moore is relying on what he learned in last season's game.

Moffat County on the offensive side of the ball:

The Bulldogs' Wing T offense moved the ball well last week at Eagle Valley, but turnovers were the culprit when it came to getting the ball into the end zone.

The Broncos' defense will line up in a 4-4 Stack - four down lineman, four linebackers and three defensive backs.

"We are going to go with pretty much the same thing we have all season," Hafey said.

Moore knows Moffat County is primarily a run-first team, and he said he thinks he knows how to stop the Bulldogs from scoring.

"We know that they can put up points," Moore said. "We have to try to keep the ball out of their hands as much as possible. If we can force a couple of turnovers, that should really help."

Junior center Jeremiah Gordon returns to the lineup this week, moving senior Ethan Robinson back to his regular full-time position on defense.

Moffat County on the defensive side of the ball:

Rawlins lines up offensively in a Wishbone formation - five lineman and a tight end, with three running backs, a receiver and a quarterback.

The Bulldogs will counter the set in defensive coordinator Lance Scranton's staple 35 defense with the Double Bulldog front.

The Broncos are averaging just three points per game this season, but they have wiggle room against the Bulldogs, who have an average of nearly 35 points per game.

"We are in position all the time; we just got to make plays," Scranton said. "That's our big goal this week. We need to know where we are on the field, and we need to make plays."

Scranton's defense has allowed just 20 points to the Broncos the six times the teams have met during his tenure, for an average of a little more than three points a game.

As far as Scranton's concerned, past results mean nothing.

"I don't worry about that stuff, because this is our defense," Scranton said. "I don't worry about what they're doing," he said. "I worry about what we're doing."

Injuries: Bulldogs: Brady Conner (knee), Brian Ivy (ankle). Devils: None.

Inactive players: Bulldogs: None. Devils: None.

Notes: MCHS assistant coach Ken Olinger was a member of the 1991 Rawlins football team that lost 16-0 to the Hafey-led Bulldogs. Hafey was starting quarterback, Olinger, starting middle linebacker.

Rawlins has lost their last three games by a combined score of 95-0.

Moffat County lost last year's homecoming game, 20-6.

The teams do not share a common opponent this season.

Before its current three-game losing streak, the Bulldogs won four homecoming games in a row.

Comments

Huckleberry 5 years, 6 months ago

Just wanted to make a correction, it's Rawlins Outlaws, not Rawlins Broncos. I bet Olinger would of known that. Good luck, may the best team win.

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bigrred1576 5 years, 6 months ago

Talk about Incentive for Rawlins. Call them the wrong name, then bring to mind that was have BEATEN the badly in the last 3 years, so their Seniors have something to prove. I know that KRAI can be heard in Rawlins (should they chose to do so), and they keep running the commercial about us haven beaten them. I hope that the hype of Homecoming doesnt distract our Bulldogs. Go Dawgs

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