Panthers host Utah team Friday

Rangely football coach Tim Galloway demonstrated a blocking technique during a preseason practice. The Panthers open the season at home Friday night against Altamont, Utah.
Rangely football coach Tim Galloway demonstrated a blocking technique during a preseason practice. The Panthers open the season at home Friday night against Altamont, Utah.

Numbers are important in sports.

Especially the ones on the scoreboard.
But it’s not the only measure of a team, or of an athlete.
That’s why Rangely football coach Tim Galloway likes his guys. Even though he may not have a lot of them.
“I would stack these 20 up against the 40 they’ve had in the past,” the second-year coach said. “I would rather have 17 kids who want to be here, rather than 45 kids and half of them don’t want to be here.
“I think the ones we have are pretty solid,” said Galloway, whose team finished with a 2-7 record last year. “Our team chemistry is very good. They believe in each other. They work well together. That’s more important than having 40 kids who hate each other.”
The number of players on this season’s Rangely football team fluctuates, depending on injuries, depending on who’s available at the time, but whatever the count on any given day, the number is small. At least by comparison.
The Panthers suited up 16 players for Saturday’s controlled scrimmage against the Fruita junior varsity.
“I talked to the Fruita coach and he said they have 120 kids out,” Galloway said. “That’s the difference between (Class) 5A and 1A.”
No score was kept during the scrimmage, but that won’t be the case Friday when the Panthers open the season with a home game against Altamont, Utah. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.
“I wish I could tell you something about them, but I know traditionally they are a hard-nosed team,” Galloway said of Altamont, which played its season-opener last week, beating Lyman, Wyo., 21-18. “They will already have a game under their belt, because Utah starts earlier than we do. It will be a good test for us.”
Galloway said his team will be up for the test, but will have to make up for its lack of depth in other ways.
“We’re just going to have to be tough,” he said. “We don’t have a lot of kids out, but what we have out is a pretty good product. We have some hardworking kids, some kids who want to listen.”
With fewer than 20 players available, one thing is for sure, the Panther starters will be on the field a lot.
“All the starters will go both ways,” Galloway said. “We won’t be doing much platooning at all. That’s why I tell the kids you have to learn to play any position. We have to put our best 11 on the field.”
As of the start of practice this week, most of the starting positions were decided. Offensively, Kody Denny, who was the backup quarterback last season, will take over the starting role.
“I think Kody will come in and do a tremendous job,” Galloway said. “He backed up Patrick Phelan last year. He’s matured a lot. He’s been a good leader for us.”
Denny will be joined in the backfield by running back Cole Barlow. Either Zakk Wenzel or Jake Smith will be the starting fullback.
“They’re pushing each other, and that’s always a good thing,” Galloway said of the two players vying for the starting fullback job.
Wenzel, however, was banged up in last Saturday’s scrimmage and his playing time may be limited Friday.
“He hurt his knee. We don’t know how severe it is,” Galloway said. “He’s had some problems with it since last year. So I don’t think it’s a new injury.”
Not that the Panthers can afford to lose any players due to injuries. But one of those players who has been sitting out is offensive lineman Brian Rector, who has a hip problem and didn’t play in the scrimmage.
Patrick Brown played center in Rector’s stead last Saturday and will be the starter if Rector is unable to play. Also in the mix on the line are Justin Goddard, Landon Mecham, Colton Coombs, Walker Smuts and either Smith or Wenzel, depending on who gets the nod at fullback.
The receivers will be Ethan Peacock, Tobie Gasper and Chas Byerly, with Chance Peters getting playing time at that position.
Defensively, Goddard, who was all-conference last season, will anchor the linebacking corps, along with Barlow, Smith and Wenzel.
“We’re hoping for a big year from him,” Galloway said of Goddard. “He  brings it.”
Elected team captains are seniors Barlow, Rector and Wenzel and juniors Denny and Goddard.
In the defensive backfield, Byerly, Denny, Gasper and Peacock will be the starters, with Peters also playing back there.
On the line, the offensive starters will rotate in on defense.
“We only play three defensive lineman at a time, so we’ll try to keep them as fresh as we can,” Galloway said.
As far as reserves, some of the younger players will be counted on to contribute.
“We have some freshmen who are stepping up and who will see some quality time,” Galloway said, mentioning Trevor Brown, Wes Goddard and Andrew Morton. “If a kid goes down, it will be a freshman or sophomore going in to replace him.”
Then there’s JoD Stults, who was moved from nose guard to the defensive backfield because of his size — or lack of it — but who epitomizes toughness, Galloway said.
“We took the world’s smallest nose guard and moved him to defensive back,” Galloway said of Stults. “He may be only 115 or 120 pounds, but he gives me 100 percent every snap. I’ve never seen him take a play off. I just wish I could get some size into him. But he’s got a heart as big as any of them.”
It’s that kind of attitude that Galloway likes about his team. What they lack in numbers, he hopes they will make up for in determination.
“Our biggest problem will be lack of depth, and we’re not very big — our biggest kid is probably 220 pounds,” Galloway said. “But we’re just going to have to be scrawny, tough street fighters.”

By JEFF BURKHEADjeff@theheraldtimes.comRANGELY I Numbers are important in sports.Especially the ones on the scoreboard.But it’s not the only measure of a team, or of an athlete.That’s why Rangely football coach Tim Galloway likes his guys. Even though he may not have a lot of them.“I would stack these 20 up against the 40 they’ve had in the past,” the second-year coach said. “I would rather have 17 kids who want to be here, rather than 45 kids and half of them don’t want to be here.“I think the ones we have are pretty solid,” said Galloway, whose team finished with a 2-7 record last year. “Our team chemistry is very good. They believe in each other. They work well together. That’s more important than having 40 kids who hate each other.”The number of players on this season’s Rangely football team fluctuates, depending on injuries, depending on who’s available at the time, but whatever the count on any given day, the number is small. At least by comparison.The Panthers suited up 16 players for Saturday’s controlled scrimmage against the Fruita junior varsity.“I talked to the Fruita coach and he said they have 120 kids out,” Galloway said. “That’s the difference between (Class) 5A and 1A.”No score was kept during the scrimmage, but that won’t be the case Friday when the Panthers open the season with a home game against Altamont, Utah. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.“I wish I could tell you something about them, but I know traditionally they are a hard-nosed team,” Galloway said of Altamont, which played its season-opener last week, beating Lyman, Wyo., 21-18. “They will already have a game under their belt, because Utah starts earlier than we do. It will be a good test for us.”Galloway said his team will be up for the test, but will have to make up for its lack of depth in other ways.“We’re just going to have to be tough,” he said. “We don’t have a lot of kids out, but what we have out is a pretty good product. We have some hardworking kids, some kids who want to listen.”With fewer than 20 players available, one thing is for sure, the Panther starters will be on the field a lot.“All the starters will go both ways,” Galloway said. “We won’t be doing much platooning at all. That’s why I tell the kids you have to learn to play any position. We have to put our best 11 on the field.”As of the start of practice this week, most of the starting positions were decided. Offensively, Kody Denny, who was the backup quarterback last season, will take over the starting role.“I think Kody will come in and do a tremendous job,” Galloway said. “He backed up Patrick Phelan last year. He’s matured a lot. He’s been a good leader for us.”Denny will be joined in the backfield by running back Cole Barlow. Either Zakk Wenzel or Jake Smith will be the starting fullback.“They’re pushing each other, and that’s always a good thing,” Galloway said of the two players vying for the starting fullback job. Wenzel, however, was banged up in last Saturday’s scrimmage and his playing time may be limited Friday.“He hurt his knee. We don’t know how severe it is,” Galloway said. “He’s had some problems with it since last year. So I don’t think it’s a new injury.”Not that the Panthers can afford to lose any players due to injuries. But one of those players who has been sitting out is offensive lineman Brian Rector, who has a hip problem and didn’t play in the scrimmage. Patrick Brown played center in Rector’s stead last Saturday and will be the starter if Rector is unable to play. Also in the mix on the line are Justin Goddard, Landon Mecham, Colton Coombs, Walker Smuts and either Smith or Wenzel, depending on who gets the nod at fullback.The receivers will be Ethan Peacock, Tobie Gasper and Chas Byerly, with Chance Peters getting playing time at that position.Defensively, Goddard, who was all-conference last season, will anchor the linebacking corps, along with Barlow, Smith and Wenzel.“We’re hoping for a big year from him,” Galloway said of Goddard. “He  brings it.”Elected team captains are seniors Barlow, Rector and Wenzel and juniors Denny and Goddard.In the defensive backfield, Byerly, Denny, Gasper and Peacock will be the starters, with Peters also playing back there.On the line, the offensive starters will rotate in on defense.“We only play three defensive lineman at a time, so we’ll try to keep them as fresh as we can,” Galloway said.As far as reserves, some of the younger players will be counted on to contribute.“We have some freshmen who are stepping up and who will see some quality time,” Galloway said, mentioning Trevor Brown, Wes Goddard and Andrew Morton. “If a kid goes down, it will be a freshman or sophomore going in to replace him.”Then there’s JoD Stults, who was moved from nose guard to the defensive backfield because of his size — or lack of it — but who epitomizes toughness, Galloway said.“We took the world’s smallest nose guard and moved him to defensive back,” Galloway said of Stults. “He may be only 115 or 120 pounds, but he gives me 100 percent every snap. I’ve never seen him take a play off. I just wish I could get some size into him. But he’s got a heart as big as any of them.”It’s that kind of attitude that Galloway likes about his team. What they lack in numbers, he hopes they will make up for in determination.“Our biggest problem will be lack of depth, and we’re not very big — our biggest kid is probably 220 pounds,” Galloway said. “But we’re just going to have to be scrawny, tough street fighters.”