WAURIKA, Okla (KSWO) - Last season, the Waurika Eagles found the success they had been searching for since moving to Class B in 2012. The Eagles went 8-3 and made the playoffs. Despite getting bounced in the first round, the team now understands what it takes to compete come playoff time.
"It gave us a feel for the playoffs. It let us know that there's more teams than just the surrounding area. Teams get bigger, they get stronger. It gave us a good idea of what we need to look forward to if we want to go into the state championship or deeper into the playoffs," said senior Tucker Mora.
The group we have and have had over the last couple years has gotten closer than some of the teams in the past, and bonded a lot better. I think that's going to be the difference in how we carry on because they get along well," added coach Glenn Howard.
Senior Logan Bernard will be looked upon to lead the way at quarterback after coming off a campaign where he scored nine total touchdowns.
"Logan's more of a passer. He places the ball better. The pace on his passes he kind of adjusts to where he's throwing and who he's throwing it to," Howard said.
"When he steps back there at quarterback, he can throw, he can run. All we have to do is give him the ball and let him run somewhere. And he can outrun anybody," said Mora.
In years past the team has relied on a power run game for success. Tucker Mora returns at tailback after running for over 1,000 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2015. However, Waurika will change things up with Mora by moving him to QB on occasion. The team feels his skill-set and speed will allow him to do plenty of damage with the new spread concepts.
"We're kind of transitioning. Last year, we were really more of an I-tailback oriented team. We've tried for the last several years to build in more spread concepts," Howard said. "If we get to the point where we want to be this year, and we get comfortable with that type of system, he will probably play more quarterback so he has the ball in his hands more."
"Realizing that we don't have a bunch of size and don't have a bunch of players, I'm going to have to use my speed this year, along with our quarterback Logan. Hopefully we'll outrun teams and run around them," Mora said.
Waurika kicks things off with a Week One match-up at home against Temple.