Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2011 | 2:05 a.m.
Las Vegas Sun sports reporters Ray Brewer and Case Keefer celebrate the return of football season with an hour-long podcast diving into anything and everything regarding local high schools. They also look back on the victories by Bishop Gorman and Moapa Valley in the Sollenberger Classic and finish with week one picks.
First-year Valley High coach Marcus Sherman envisions leading the Vikings back to their winning ways of the past.
A powerhouse in the 1970s and 80s, Sherman knows his first task in the rebuilding process starts with getting more of the school’s students interested in joining the team. Valley has struggled in recent years with numbers, often not having enough bodies to field a team at all three levels and lacking depth on the varsity to be competitive with Northeast Division powerhouse Las Vegas High.
“Guys are showing up everyday and working hard. That right there will make us better,” Sherman said. “We have to believe we are a winning team. The kids are buying into it little by little. The ones I have I will fight against anyone. I just need to get the numbers up to have kids to join them.”
Valley could start as many as seven freshmen and sophomores, and has a limited amount of returners with significant experience.
The Vikings, however, return one of the league’s top defensive linemen in Chris Hicks. Hicks, a 6-foot-3, 215-pound senior will be a three-year starter.
Also, quarterback Anthony Sanders and running back Bryon Peeples return to give Valley a strong foundation offensively. Sanders completed 53-percent of his passes last year for 1,105 yards and 10 touchdowns, while Peeples averaged 5.7 yards per carry.
Defensively, senior safety Erik Edmonds will anchor the secondary.
“I want the kids to love playing football,” Sherman said. “ I just don’t want the kids to go out for football. If they have a passion for it, I can make it work.”