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Pine Bluffs looking ahead into transition to nine-man football

Published: Sep. 3, 2020 at 9:09 PM CDT
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CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - The Pine Bluffs Hornets are coming into this season with a slightly different approach than years past, as they transition from 11-man, to nine-man football.

“It’s definitely been different but we’ve been adjusting well,” junior wide receiver, Reed Thompson said. “We’ve been installing some new plays just for nine-man base.”

The decision to go nine-man was made based off the enrollment and the body type of the team, after considering going up to 2A.

“Missing two players, there’s a lot of open space in the field. I feel like if you have fast people on your team, you can be good,” senior wide receiver, Marvin Reza said.

Even with the change, Pine Bluffs is optimistic on what nine-man football will bring to their program.

Junior running back, Andrew Loya, runs the ball during practice at Pine Bluffs.
Junior running back, Andrew Loya, runs the ball during practice at Pine Bluffs.(KGWN)

“We feel good, obviously there’s things to get better at like there is each and every week and every year and we feel good with where we’re at,” Hornets head coach, Will Gray said. “Adjusting to nine-man has been different but it’s been fun at the same time.”

With the Hornets going 2-7 last year, the team feels confident that they’ll have a completely different season.

“We have some confidence in the team, and know that we’ve gotten better from last year, we’ve got kids that have gotten a lot faster, getting in the weight room,” sophomore quarterback, Stuart Lerwick.

Sophomore quarterback, Stuart Lerwick, at practice for the Pine Bluffs Hornets.
Sophomore quarterback, Stuart Lerwick, at practice for the Pine Bluffs Hornets.(KGWN)

Even though they only have four seniors returning, the Hornets come in with multiple players having varsity experience, expecting a turnaround from last year.

Pine Bluffs starts the season at home against Riverside on Friday, September 4. Kickoff is at 2:00pm.

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