Looking back on Torrington’s 2023 Football State Championship
CHEYENNE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - “Yeah week by week we just focused on things we needed and improved week by week. Improve one thing then work on the next thing next week and keep on rolling and trusting each other and believing in each other.”
What you just read was the method that Torrington needed to follow to get to the top of 2A, and while they are at the top now it wasn’t looking great for them earlier in the year
“I mean there’s a lot to it, like... Yeah going 0 and 2 in the season and we our practices were miserable. We were running, we were hitting, we were learning new offenses and just constantly going on offense and defense. Trying to put in new plays on offense and defense and trying to learn what they run and trying to match what they run to we run and just execute it.”
The team faced a lot of criticism early in the season. Through their first 5 games they ended up with a 2-3 record, but they liked the adversity
“We like it. We like it when they don’t like us. Cause WyoPreps don’t like us like everyone’s just like ‘alright yeah Torrington they’re not winning it,’ but then we continued to prove that we can do it and we did it,” said Bryce Hager.
Running back Kaiden Riggs said, “When we first went 0 and 2 in the non-conference, I felt like there were a lot of parents that had like no faith in us, but we were in practice, and we were just striving to get better and every day we got better.”
What a way to get better. They finished the year on a 7 game win streak, and their playoff run was no joke. They fought their way through Cokeville in the first round. Right after that was the previously undefeated Mountain View Buffaloes. Standing between them and the state title was the defending champs a big Horn who beat them earlier in the year.
Kaiden was on fire all day, and he said, “I mean it’s just a lot of if there’s someone like, if there’s someone’s rolling, if someone’s doing good, our main objective is to keep going with that same person cause that person’s hot and they can’t stop them.”
Kaiden had one of the best games of his career. He ended the day with 131 rushing yards and 80 receiving yards with 3 total touchdowns. They made the big plays when it mattered most in the clutch, and Bryce believes it came down to everyone doing their jobs.
He said, “Yeah when it came down to it everyone just stayed calm, knew what they needed to do, knew their jobs and they just did them. Caught the ball, snap the ball, blocked. Whatever they needed to do they did it.”
When it was all said and done the Trailblazers found their first title since 1990 and their first ever 2A state title, and they couldn’t do it without the people of Torrington backing them up.
“This town gives us excellent support, I mean the whole area gives us excellent support. I mean we have 3 high schools in our community, and so they’re, I mean all the small businesses, everybody else, I mean, everybody just donates. They’re so generous and we just have excellent support, you know, year after year. It doesn’t matter if we win state or we don’t make playoffs like last year so we just get excellent support from the community.”
With the title coming back to Torrington, quarterback Bryce Hager knew how he was going to celebrate.
“I can’t wait to just go home, be with my teammates, maybe play Fortnite or something. Just ball out.”
Congratulations to Torrington for winning the 2023 2A State Title!
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