Dylan Villa, left, and Keith Smith work through strength drills in the Moffat County High School weight room Tuesday. The Moffat County football team's practices begin in less than two weeks, and the first game of the season is a month away.

Photo by Nate Waggenspack

Dylan Villa, left, and Keith Smith work through strength drills in the Moffat County High School weight room Tuesday. The Moffat County football team's practices begin in less than two weeks, and the first game of the season is a month away.

Moffat County football schedule set for 2013

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MCHS football 2013 schedule

Aug. 31 at Ridgeview Academy

Sept. 6 at Rifle

Sept. 13 vs. Steamboat Springs

Sept. 20 at Delta

Sept. 27 vs. Eagle Valley

Oct. 4 at Summit

Oct. 11 at Glenwood Springs

Oct. 18 vs. Montezuma-Cortez

Oct. 25 at Battle Mountain

Nov. 1 vs. Palisade

The Moffat County High School football schedule has been released for the upcoming 2013 season, bringing the Bulldogs and their fans one step closer to Friday night football.

A mirror of last season’s schedule, Moffat County will play the same group of teams from last year, with each home game from last year turning to a road one and vice versa. As a result, Moffat County will play six games on the road and four at the Bulldog Proving Grounds this season — a tall task for a young team.

“We know that we’re going to have to earn everything we win,” said head coach Kip Hafey of the schedule. “That will come through hard work, sacrifice, dedication and effort. We’re going to be road warriors this year.”

The season begins with a Saturday afternoon contest, as Moffat County will travel to Watkins to take on Ridgeview Academy, which they dispatched of in Craig 40-15 last year. But Hafey is not overlooking any team.

“That’s a tough first game,” he said. “It’s a long trip, stay overnight in a hotel, and then you’re dealing with first game jitters on the road. But I’m excited, that will be a good test for us.”

The Bulldogs will not play in Craig until the third game of the season, when they host Steamboat Springs on Friday, Sept. 13. Having a rivalry game to open play in Craig is always an exciting prospect, said Lineman Dylan Villa.

“That’s going to be a great game against Steamboat,” he said. “A great way to start the home season.”

The Bulldogs will play the same 3A Western Slope League schedule as last season, which Hafey expects to be as difficult as any year since he’s been in Craig. Despite key graduates from some of the teams, such as Rifle’s Ryan Moeller, last year’s Colorado 3A player of the year, the Moffat County coach doesn’t see the WSL getting any easier.

“It’s the toughest league in the state, we really believe that,” he said. “If you get into the playoffs from our conference you’ve got a shot at making a run for the title. So people maybe think this is a rebuilding year for us but that’s not how we’re approaching it. We want to give ourselves that shot.”

Based on last year’s results, the second half of Moffat County’s season could be easier and provide them a chance to make a late-season run, with games against Summit, Montezuma-Cortez and Battle Mountain. But they also see Glenwood Springs and Palisade during that stretch, two teams who beat them convincingly last season.

Villa knows it is never going to be easy for the Bulldogs this season.

“We’ve just got to work hard together, and work as hard as we can all the time,” he said. “We’ve got to practice as a team and play as a team.”

Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@craigdailypress.com

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