YODER – Russell Stienmetz is getting more and more comfortable with his new role, leading the Torrington Blazer football team.
It’s something that has proved to be a challenge for him this summer, but one Stienmetz, who is in his first season at the helm of the Torrington High School football team, is excited for.
“There are some challenges, but there is some excitement that comes with that,” he said. “I’m surrounded by great coaches who are on me if I forget something.”
Practice doesn’t officially begin until Monday, Aug. 19, but the Blazers have been hard at work this summer getting ready for the season opener against the Glenrock Herders.
Last weekend, July 11-12, the Blazers donned on the pads with a two-day team camp hosted by the Southeast Cyclones for drills, 7-on-7 and an 11-on-11 scrimmages.
The two Goshen County teams were joined by the Burns Broncs on Friday in conjunction with a game official’s camp, as they too prepare for the 2019 season.
The Blazers didn’t have all of their pieces at the camp, but the turnout this summer has been strong for the two-time defending Class 3A state runners-up.
“We’ve had a great summer so far,” Stienmetz said. “We’ve had a great turnout in the weight room.”
At the camp, many of the Blazers’ younger players step up in key areas despite missing a handful of juniors and seniors.
“Things went well. We have a lot of sophomores playing tonight (Thursday) in skill positions. It was a great learning curve for them on offense and defense,” Stienmetz said.
On Friday, the Blazers were even thinner with several players out of town for a baseball tournament, but it allowed some of the younger kids some valuable playing time.
“We will be really thin and real young, but that is awesome,” Stienmetz said. “It helps those younger kids with the learning curve.”
Torrington will open the 2019 season at Wiseman Field against Glenrock on Friday, Sept. 6. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.