KINGMAN – Adventure awaits the Kingman High School football team Friday night in Phoenix. The Bulldogs make their first road trip of the season to face Valley Lutheran and head coach Cam Wierson likes to use a certain strategy to prepare the squad.
“I always tell our kids at the end of a practice during a road week, ‘Let’s get on our yellow pirate ship and go have some fun,’” Wierson said. “They seem to enjoy that concept, and admittedly, so do I.”
Kingman (2-0) is coming off a bye week that featured a full three days off to help the Bulldogs get healthy after a flu bug hit the team.
The extra rest should pay dividends as Kingman faces a squad that picked up a 28-22 victory over Glendale Prep last Friday – the Flames’ first victory in 11-man football.
“The scoring summary definitely speaks to the character of their team,” Wierson said. “They played hard and never gave up, which ultimately yielded a win.”
Wierson added that he and his staff noticed Valley Lutheran scrapped its offense from the season-opener and now run the I-formation and double-wing offense.
“It’s clearly a ‘Week 1’ caliber offense, but I admire the job their staff and kids accomplished from Week 1 to Week 2,” Wierson said. “They were a new and improved team in just one week.”
The Bulldogs, meanwhile, counter with a trio of running backs in Austin Dias, Gavin Randall and Darrell Mitchell. Dias leads the charge with 302 yards and four touchdowns, while Randall and Mitchell each have two rushing scores.
Austin Dias has also found success throwing the ball to his older brother Danny Dias. The senior has caught 11 passes for 169 yards and three touchdowns.
With a win over Valley Lutheran, Kingman would not only start the season at 3-0, but they’d also inch closer to its best record since 2013 at 4-6. While that possibility is no doubt on the minds of the Bulldogs, Wierson is making sure he has the team focused on playing the game.
“We ask ourselves constantly, ‘Did I do that rep beyond a reasonable doubt?’” he said. “It’s each man’s responsibility in our outfit to ask that question in every single thing we do and to answer it affirmatively. In the event the question is answered negatively, it’s our job as players and coaches to correct the effort and do it again properly.”