The Wooster football program is where Galena wants to be. The Grizzlies will find out how far they are to becoming a traditional power like the Colts.
Galena will host Wooster, last season's state-runnerup team, in an early test. In another game featuring a Carson Country team, Yerington will host Incline Village in its season opener. Both games will be played at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
The Grizzlies made the Northern 4A playoffs for the first time in school history last year and hope to build on that achievement. Wooster again is expected to be a Northern 4A power as its the favorite to win the Sierra League.
"I know they've got one of the better coaching staffs and that they're going to have their kids ready to go," Galena coach Greg Sakaleris said. "They've got a lot of tradition to live up to."
Wooster is led by tight end-defensive end J.J. Milan, who can cause havoc for opposing offenses.
"He's probably the best player in Northern Nevada," Sakaleris said.
Sakaleris said it will be a team effort to try to contain Milan on defense."We're just going to challenge our offensive line," he said.
Another versatile threat for Wooster is Ben Confer, who can play virtually any skilled position on offense and is a strong defensive player as well. "He'll probably play everything," Sakaleris said.
Among Galena's leaders will be Luke Penrose at tailback and free safety. Penrose is a returning all-Northern Nevada first team choice at free safety.
Pat Flynn will direct Galena's attack at quarterback and his primary target figures to be Vann Adams.
"They were predicted to be the top team in their division," said Sakaleris about Wooster. "Predictions don't mean much until the games are played.
"It will give us a good indication where we stand. We're ready to go."
INCLINE AT YERINGTON
Yerington coach Cody Neville said his team is ready for the season to begin."We've got most of the rough edges off," he said.
Incline and Yerington are similar on offense in that they rely on deception. Incline relies on a wishbone option.
"I think we've got a pretty good game plan," said Neville about defending the wishbone. "It's always kind of a spooky offense to go up against.
"Defensively we're going to play really aggressive. We're definitely not going to be standing back and waiting for people to score."
Yerington's offense will be led by quarterback Phil Wilson and running backs Randy Shumate and Doug Paine.
"The focus is deception and getting angles on people when we block," Neville said.
With 23 players, the focus is also on staying healthy, which the Lions have done so far.
"Right now we're in pretty good shape," Neville said. "Health is a big issue in our case."