By Addison Skaggs - Perryton High School
The past two seasons behind head coach David Flowers have been considered "rebuilding" years for the Perryton High School football team. This year it is a different story.
With an overall record of 7-5 and a playoff win last season, the expectations are high for the 2013 Ranger football team. Last season was the most productive year for the Raging Red since the 2005 season. The small town of Perryton is hoping for a flashback to the glory days of Ranger football as they enter the season ranked first in District 1-3A.
When asked what this year's team is doing to live up to the heightened expectations, junior starting quarterback Justin Ventura explained, "We are working hard every chance we can. The intensity of the team is high and everyone's motors are running full blast. Our focus is set on that District Championship again plus playing in December! We are going to do whatever it takes! Ranger Pride Never Dies!"
The Rangers return 20 letter winners including 7 starters on each side of the ball.
Included in those returning starters is QB Justin Ventura, who was moved up last year from the junior varsity at the midseason point, completed 105 of 196 passing attempts for 1205 yards and 13 touchdowns. One of his favorite targets, senior Jake Whittenburg, also returns for the Rangers. Whittenburg scored a total of 10 touchdowns last season, 5 rushing and 5 receiving. He carried the ball 75 times for 498 yards and caught 56 passes for 639 yards.
On the defensive side of the ball, senior Jeran Karber, an Amarillo Globe News Preseason Super Team member, leads the way. Last season, Karber recorded 59 solo tackles and 45 assisted tackles including 11 sacks and 20 tackles for a loss.
The Rangers week one match up always proves to be a good challenge and difficult match-up as the Dumas Demons visit Perryton. The Demons are led by new head coach Chad Dunnam. Last year, Dumas finished with an overall record of 4-6 in a very difficult District 3-4A. One of their victories was in the opening game of the season against Perryton by a score of 49-29.
The Rangers hope for a different outcome this season as they kick off against the Dumas Demons on Friday night on Ranger Field at 7:30.