The Indians wrapped up 2013 with wins over Dublin and Merkel before falling to Comanche in the season finale. The key for the Indians now will be taking that strong finish into the next season.
"We talked about that at the end of the year, and went into the offseason with it. That taste that we had, that winning streak, and finishing off the year good. We really had a great offseason. That's kind of carried over into the summer, and now into the fall," said head coach Jeff Williamson.
"It's kind of raining the intensity, I guess, when we get over into the next season. That high is still there. So, we just want to keep it going, and go into the next season with that," said Tristen Cortez.
Jim Ned returns plenty of talent off last year's team with 13 players back in the fold for 2014. That includes a total of nine starters.
"The experience of those guys that we've got returning, they've got a lot of games under their belts. A lot of win. That's big for us around here, because now they can tell these younger kids, that we're going to ask to play , what it's like to win, and what it takes to win in the forth quarter," said Williamson.
Quarterback Will Doty is just one of them. The junior finished the season by starting the final six ball games. During that time he threw for over 1,000 yards and ten touchdowns. At the same time, he knows it will take a complete team effort to finish ball games.
"We were ahead or right there in every single game at half time, and let up in the third quarter. This year that's our big thing, is to not let up. A full 48 minutes of fyling around and getting after it," said Will Doty.
Helping Doty this year will be a slew of skill players returning. That includes running back Peyton Polston, as well as wide receivers Tyler Bradshaw, Shea Esterling, and Tristen Cortez.
On the defensive side of the ball, look for defensive end Mitch Boswell and linebacker Jonathan Michaels to be the anchors.
Even with the skilled talent returning to the Jim Ned roster in 2014, they find themselves in one of the toughest districts in the Big Country. Not only do they have to take on Bangs, Clyde, and Brady, but also 2013 state runner-up Wall.
Dave Campbell's Texas Football picked the Indians to miss the playoffs this year by finishing fifth in the district. At the same time the Indians are confident they can make some noise.
"All that does is make us hungry, and makes us want to go out and get even more Know that we're in fifth place and we have to beat somebody out. I think we can do it," said Cortez.
The Indians will kick off the 2014 season against Coleman on August 29th.
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