Two straight losses in week four and week five brought the Sierra Stallions down to .500, but they look to rebound in their last non-conference game against Pueblo Centennial.
“I think we’re just tired of losing,” quarterback and safety Connar Burgess said. “We’re done. Two’s enough for us.”
“Especially for us seniors, this will be our last homecoming game,” lineman Toa Naupoto said. “We’re going to give it our all.”
Pueblo Centennial also looks to avoid sinking below .500. The Bulldogs committee of running backs averages more than 270 yards per game.
“It’s tough having all that diversity in the backfield,” cornerback and wide receiver Tristan Burris said. “If our linebackers get where they need to be and if our corners can contain, our safeties can come fill the gap. I feel like it doesn’t really matter who’s in the backfield, as long as we execute and be precise about what we’re supposed to do.”
The Stallions are running with just 31 players listed on their roster. That’s less than half the size of most teams.
“We try our best to go out there and go as hard as we can,” Burris said. “We get tired, we get gimped up, we just got to keep pushing.”
“I think it’s definitely more of a challenge because a lot of the kids, they don’t really get breaks on this team,” Naupoto said. “It really comes to you, mentally on how you want to work.”
With that in mind, Head Coach Draye Ersery has stressed one message to his team since day one.
“Taking over the program in February, I wanted to make sure it was crystal clear that it was about the guy next to you,” he said. “We want to get rid of selfish behavior and understand that you’re playing for the guy next to you for 48 minutes.”
Sierra may not have strength in numbers, but with the right mentality, can find it somewhere else.
“We’ve got to keep each other up,” Burris said. “We got to make sure we hold each other accountable.”
“We eat together, we talk about our issues together, we work through our issues together, we come up with solutions together,” Ersery said. “I think the message here we’re trying to send everyone is together.”
The Stallions and Bulldogs kick off at 7 p.m. Friday from Memorial Stadium in Colorado Springs.