Mustangs Fall Short to Valley at Homecoming Game

Zak Talbot, Copy Editor

There are few weeks in a year where an entire city shifts its focus to one thing, and even fewer when the focus isn’t a holiday. Although, in a way, homecoming is a holiday to the city of Manitou Springs, and the feeling of excitement and anticipation yet again filled the atmosphere of the town and the school. At the tail end of all the events, the Manitou Springs High School Football Team took on Valley High School on the night of Friday the 13th. 

After a strong stop on defense on the opening drive, the Mustang’s offense drove down the field and capped it off with a one yard touchdown run by Dominick Pearson (12) for a 6-0 lead. The momentum was able to be carried for yet another defensive stop with a fumble recovery to set Manitou up with great field position. Tate Christian (10) showed his strength by shedding two tackles and scoring in a 15 yard run. With the two point conversion good, the Mustangs sat comfortably with a 14-0 lead. Though after a blunder, the Valley Vikings gained ground with seven points of their own. This proved to be the change of momentum for the rest of the game. Valley proceeded to tie the game before halftime and was able to carry their energy throughout the rest of the second half. Valley jumped out to a 35-14 lead and held off the Mustangs for the entirety of the remaining time. At the end of the game, the Mustangs found themselves on the wrong side of a 41-29 final score.

Though with all the disappointment surrounding a loss on homecoming, some good still came out of the Mustang’s first loss of the season. The team was able to reflect about missed opportunities and focus on what’s needed to fix their mistakes. 

“We should have played much better than we did on Friday,” said senior leader Orion Lavigne, “it wasn’t a lack of talent, it was a lack of brotherhood, our biggest hurdle this season will be coming together as a team.”

It’s obvious the Mustangs have all the physical talent needed to be a top team in their league, so their focus will shift to strengthening their bonds with one another in order to be on the same page during times of stress. 

The young freshmen of the team also showed positive signs of growth as players Dylan Jardin (9), Tyler Maloney (9) and Jacob Pivonka (9) all stepped up in crucial moments of the game. Their progress and development will be crucial to the team’s success for the rest of the season. Jardin had earned himself a starting spot on both offense and defense while Maloney and Pivonka both worked hard on and off the field to prove their worth and will receive more playing time as an outcome.

The Mustangs will next host Faith Christian on Friday, September 20th at 7:00 PM at Richardson Field, where they’ll attempt to bounce back from the loss as well as work towards their postseason goals.