Fall sports preview: Football feels set for big season
Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include a player whose name had been left out previously. We regret the error.
With about 50 players coming out for the team at the end of training camp and a successful scrimmage under their belts, the Moffat County High School football team is ready and raring to get to some real games.
“The kids are excited,” head coach Lance Scranton said Tuesday. “As far as we can tell as a coaching staff, they look ready to get going Saturday against Northfield.”
Scranton said he thinks the team looks balanced and that film from the Meeker scrimmage this past weekend was encouraging and enlightening.
“We’ll see though, once you get into a football game, there’s a lot of adjustments to make,” Scranton said. “You scheme throughout the week but it’s a lot of adjustments.”
Scranton said the team will lean on its strong group of juniors and seniors. The latter group counts 10 boys, including a few newcomers to the team in their final season of high school.
The 10 seniors are: Ryan Peck, quarterback; Carson Miller, defensive back/receiver; Trace Frederickson, outside linebacker/running back; Joey Winters, right tackle; Taran Teeter, inside linebacker/fullback; Ethan Hafey, defensive end/tight end; Logan Hafey, defensive end/tight end; Miles Simpson, receiver; Alex Musgrave, defensive line/linebacker; Kyle Hoag, athlete.
The football season starts Saturday at home against Northfield at 1 p.m.
Peck carries a legacy on his shoulders at quarterback
Peck, the senior quarterback, has been preparing for this season his whole life.
“My dad was a quarterback when he was in high school,” Peck said. “I always wanted to follow in his footsteps. He actually went to college to play quarterback, and I started working at it with him when I was young. He’d teach me to throw a ball, and got me to where I am today.”
Peck’s dad played at Dartmouth, Peck said. And they’ve been playing catch in the backyard as long as he can remember.
“It all started with my dad and I playing catch,” he said. “I don’t know how many times a week, but almost every time after he came home from work, we’d play catch of some sort — football or baseball. He’s been with me every step of the way, teaching me better drops, your back foot’s open, you’re not over the top — I went to camps in Denver trying to get myself to be the best QB I could.”
Peck is now seeing defenses better than ever, he said, and feels like he can throw the ball better.
“I just want to throw the ball better and make better decisions for my team,” he said.
Peck hopes to attend either Utah State University in Logan, Utah, or Embry-Riddle University in Daytona Beach, Florida, after high school.
“I want to be a pilot of some sort or study aerospace engineering,” he said.
He thinks this Bulldogs team has a chance at doing something special in the meantime.
“We have a really good team this year,” Peck said. “I’m excited for it. Lots of seniors who played a lot of time on varsity who know what they’re doing, and juniors stepping up in big roles. And there’s sophomores stepping up big, too. I think we have a big shot to do big things, but we’ve gotta go one game at a time and focus on us.”
Winters ready for a big sendoff season
Winters has played right tackle at the varsity level all four years he’s been in high school. He’s ready for the best season yet.
He’s been with each member of his offensive line at least a couple of years, and he feels the cohesion in the unit is at its absolute maximum.
“We all work to make each other better, and during games we’re motivating each other,” Winters said.
Winters said that high school has gone by surprisingly fast, and with a set plan for next summer, there’s little doubt senior year does the same.
“I’m joining the Marine Corps,” Winters said. “Ship date is July 10. Headed to San Diego for boot camp.”
Winters said enlisting has been a dream for him since he was young.
“Ever since I was little I wanted to be a Marine,” he said. “I’ve had grandparents in the Army, and I wanted to do something a little different. I’m really excited to be part of another brotherhood in the Marines. And I’m excited to travel the world, learn new things.”
This will probably be Winters’ last year playing competitive football, and he’s ready to soak it all in.
“I’ll definitely miss it,” he said. “I’ll miss bonding with the team and the coaches.”
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Next week, Colorado Northwestern Community College and Moffat County are hosting a free day-long seminar for local ranchers and agriculture producers.