It’s hard to imagine the Desert Vista Thunder won more games three years ago (nine) than they did the the past two seasons combined (seven).
Head coach Dan Hines and his staff believe the right pieces are in place for a bounce-back year at the usually talent-rich Ahwatukee school.
“It was kind of an inconsistent season for our whole football team,” Hines told Sports360AZ.com referencing his teams’ 3-7 finish in 2014. “Fortunately, we’ve got 10 guys coming back on [defense] and nine coming back on [offense] so…overall I think we’re going to be a lot better as a football team.”
One of the inconsistent players from last season has worked hard this off-season to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself at DV.
Senior quarterback Alex Farina excelled in spring workouts while accepting more of a leadership role on a team loaded with veterans. Farina, an outstanding student, has offers from NAU and Cornell and recent interest from San Diego State.
He’s looking forward to seeing some familiar faces in the huddle.
“It’s something I haven’t had the past couple years,” Farina explained to Sports360AZ.com. “It’s going to be great….we’ve been doing a lot of good things [in spring ball]. It’s good to see.”
The Thunder lost top receiver T.J. Roberts to graduation but return speedy junior Kendon Walker although with seniors Matt Shepardson and Raymond Figueroa. The top returning rusher is Isiah Ford who averaged 6.5 yards-per-carry last season and scored five touchdowns.
The defense loses two-sport star Cade van Raaphorst but safety Steven Hartshorn West and defensive lineman Adrian Perez bring experience and playmaking ability.