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Sandhills Valley Football
NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) - Last season the Sandhills Valley Mavericks went 3-6 the season. They were young in 2021 with only one Senior on the team, this fall they have five Seniors suiting up for them. Head Coach of the Mavs Luke Connell enters his fourth season at Sandhills Valley and says this Senior Class is the heart and soul of this Mavericks Team. And while there are a lot of special qualities about this group one that stands out is they haven’t missed the playoffs a single year.
With a lot of returners on this year’s team, the expectations are raised in hopes that last year’s experience will prove to be helpful. One thing that has changed from last year to this year is the buy-in from the players, that is something that Seniors Caleb Burnside (Running Back & Safety) and Tad Dimmitt (Right Guard & Defensive Tackle) both noted. There’s been a lot better attendance this summer at workouts than in years past according to the two Seniors.
“We had a lot more people show up. We’re putting in a lot more work this year. Our linemen have been doing a lot more conditioning and footwork. We’ve started to take every drill in practice more seriously, which will show off this season,” says Dimmitt.
“Pretty good, this year we had a big improvement of participation and getting guys out there. We sent like 18 to Chadron which is really nice, usually, we only send eight. In my Freshmen Year, we only sent eight and we were six man so we only had two subs, that was really hectic. It’s just a lot better with getting guys out there,” says Burnside.
The Mavericks have a schedule full of new teams this season including a lot of local competition. There’s a lot to be excited about there rivalries to be made between local schools and of course not having to travel as far to away games.
“Saint Pats moving down that’s a huge game, right down the road for us. Sutherland is a big game for us, and Perkins Country. And then for me and a lot of the boys, personally Mullen, getting to get Mullen in the regular season is a big deal,” explains Connell.
“I remember Freshmen Year we had to go all the way to Sioux County and that’s all the way in the middle of nowhere. So this year, we have a 30-minute or 45-minute drive and that’s pretty exciting. Seeing some guys that you’ve hung out with and getting to show them whos best on the field,” says Burnside.
The Mavericks open up with Southern Valley on the road in Week One.
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