Thermopolis Independent Record - Your source for news in Hot Springs County

By Mark Dykes

Bobcat football shows depth


August 16, 2018

Mark Dykes

The Thermopolis Bobcats saw their first season practice Monday night, and will take to the field in a scrimmage at home on Saturday, Aug. 25.

It's time to start getting excited for action at LeRoy Hayes Memorial Stadium, as Bobcat Football gets underway with an at-home scrimmage against Shoshoni and Wind River on Saturday, Aug. 25.

Returning starters for the season include seniors Chandler Maddock, Tyson Tobar, Jeffery VanAntwerp, Kolby George, Ethan Becher and Jon Harvey, juniors Spencer Axtell, Dustin Harvey and Jason Clouse, and sophomores Logan Cole and Remington Ferree.

Several other players with experience are also expected to be contributors, including senior Bubba Watt, juniors Riley Shaffer, Oran Coyne, Jarron Mortimore, Cade McLean, Tyler Kay and Hyrum Rich, and sophomores Leam Daniels and Jaxon Jensen.

"Overall, coach Matthew McPhie stated, "the 2018 Bobcat football team has a good amount of experience returning in many areas. The most exciting thing we see as a staff - depth. Along with plenty of returning starters and contributors from last year's team, we also have a bunch of kids who didn't play much or missed last year who have worked extremely hard in the weight room during the off-season and will provide us with competition day in and day out in practice.

"We have been striving since day one to create a competitive atmosphere and culture within this program. Learning how to win, learning from defeat, and creating a competitive atmosphere in daily workouts is beginning to pay off. Our expectations have been raised both as a staff and with the players. These young men had a taste of success last year, and the off-season message of work they invested has been received loud and clear...our players are ready to take the next step.

"Along with having some returning experience, we also have some unanswered questions in some key positions. We lost some good kids last year to graduation and it will be exciting to see how the line-up develops as we get through our fall camp.

"The blueprint for success that we seek really doesn't change from year to year. We want to run the football effectively on offense. We feel like we have some good matchups upfront and we will lean on our offensive line to control the line of scrimmage. Defensively, we will fly around and get to the football. At the end of each play, we want 11 hats near the ball. We want to play fast and physical.

"As always, we invite competition and fully expect some player that we may not have expected to be a big contributor this season. Someone, or a few guys, will come out and surprise us as a staff, and he will be on the field. It's never been about what grade you're in, your last name, or things like that. We want to put the best players on the field who are bought in and willing to do their job.

McPhie looks forward to an excellent year, and expressed appreciation to the community for the support. "It's a great day to be a Bobcat!"

Next Saturday's scrimmage begins at 11 a.m., and the Bobcats first game will be away against Big Horn on Friday, Aug. 31 at 6 p.m.


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