Published Friday, Oct. 5, 2012 | 6:30 p.m.
Updated Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012 | 1:05 a.m.
Las Vegas Sun sports reporters Ray Brewer and Case Keefer dish on all things Las Vegas high school football again this week. Among the debates, other than the usual picks segment, are whether it's acceptable for an NFL player to introduce his high school alma mater instead of his college.
When the teams kick off at 7 p.m. Friday night at Las Vegas in the Northeast League opener for both teams, Rancho coach Perryn Hale has made sure his players aren’t entering the prestigious rivalry game with a losing mindset. Sure, Rancho has lost its last 16 meetings to Las Vegas and enter this year’s game with a losing record at 0-3 overall in surrendering more than 50 points per game.
But, come kickoff, you can easily argue that the emotions of playing in one of Nevada’s longest-standing rivalry games make the teams equal.
Hale, who became the Rams coach last spring, has stressed to his players since their first team meeting the importance of this game. If they win, regardless what happens the rest of the fall, the season will be a success.
When taking inventory of his team’s equipment, Hale stumbled upon an empty glass box in the corner of a storage closet. After a little research, he learned the box is used to store the bone when Rancho is victorious in the rivalry game.
He cleaned the box, and made sure his players understood its significance and what they are playing for. The empty box sits in the locker room and frequently is brought onto the practice field for motivation.
“It’s one thing to talk about beating Las Vegas,” Hale said in August. “But by keeping the box in the back of the equipment room, the kids forget about what they are playing for. It makes them hungry to fill that box back up again.”
This isn’t the lone game of significance on the night.
Moapa Valley travels to Boulder City in a battle of the Division I-A’s top teams — both are undefeated in conference play, and the winner will have a leg-up on capturing the league title and home field advantage in the for the playoffs.
High school football results from around Southern Nevada: