K2 Gridiron Report: Cheyenne East Thunderbirds

With the summer sun setting on Cheyenne East High School, the Thunderbirds were in full focus Friday evening ending the first week of practice on a high note.

"The first week of two a days went really well," says Right Guard Nate Longemann. "We got a couple things we need to work on, but we're really starting to get together as a team."

Returning from an 8 and 3 record and coming within a game of a state championship berth in 2015, the mindset this season is to finish strong.

"We got to go back in with a different mentality than we had and we gotta go out there and earn some things this year", Head Coach Chad Goff explains. "We didn't finish real well last year. I know it's sat in the kids' minds and we've addressed some things we need to change."

Focusing on attention to detail going into the season with a senior led team, that knows what it takes to compete for a state championship.

"We just need to take it day by day, practice by practice, keep working hard and it'll all take care of itself", concludes Goff.

And while the end result often determines success and failure, Coach Goff believes if the team can put passion and hard work out on the field, the wins will be there on the field.

Says Inside Lineback Rayce Phillips: "When it boils down to it, you want these kids to leave here with great memories. So far they've come together and they've done some good things and they're a tight group of kids. And so if they can stay that way and we can keep rolling with that type of attitude and the great character they possess, it'll be a good season.

With the first week of fall practice in the books for the East High Thunderbirds, the attention now turns towards their first game of the season coming up against Rock Springs in a couple of weeks, trying to build off a semi final appearance in last years' 4A state playoffs.

This is Mitchell Bean reporting for KKTQ, Cheyenne.