TUSCON, Ariz — Santa Rita head coach Richard Sanchez had to finish practice early on Wednesday afternoon as the monsoon made its way through east Tuscon.
"The better prepared we are, the better prepared we'll be on Friday night," the veteran coach said.
Sanchez knows about preparation. He won two state titles as head coach at Sunnsyside. However, last year the Eagles went winless in his first season at Santa Rita.
"That hasn't happened to me before," he said.
Turnout is now double what it was a season ago. The roster is bigger, and so are the players thanks to an improved weight room. Center Jesus Mejia and quarterback Alex Durgin are set to lead the Eagles offense.
"They're underestimating us," said Durgin. "I like our squad right now. I wouldn't trade it for anyone else."
"We're not just trying to change our kids mindset," said Sanchez. "We're trying to change the mindset of the community."