Just win, baby.
The Rocky Mountain High School football team has that mentality, made famous by former Oakland Raiders owner Al Davis.
The Lobos are 0-4 with lopsided losses to top 10 teams in Columbine and Fairview, but they’ve been plenty competitive in one-score losses to Fossil Ridge and Poudre, so Rocky Mountain is desperate for a victory.
CITY RIVALS: Poudre scrapes out a win over Rocky Mountain
Rocky Mountain hosts Horizon (2-2) Friday night, a longtime Front Range League foe. They’re now in separate conferences, but will battle in the final nonconference game of the season.
Here are keys to Friday’s 7 p.m. kickoff at French Field.
To win, Horizon must: Ride Verkler. Senior running back Cade Verkler has been unstoppable this season. He’s taken the lead in Class 5A with 817 rushing yards, a staggering 204 per game.
He’s scored seven touchdowns and only once has been held under 200 yards. He is going to get tons of carries. If he pops a few big scoring runs, it will likely boost the Hawks to their third win of the year.
To win, Rocky Mountain must: Force turnovers. Winning the turnover battle is always one of the hardest things for a young team to do.
And the Lobos are certainly young. Graduations and a rash of injuries have accelerated the promotion of many underclassmen who are learning on the job.
Rocky Mountain has struggled to create turnovers. Lucas Osborn has the only interception on the season. Brady Morris has recovered two fumbles, and Teagan Liufau has picked one up.
Horizon will pound the ball on the ground. If the Lobos can rip the ball away from Horizon multiple times, it will boost confidence through the team and could spark a win.
Follow sports reporter Kevin Lytle at twitter.com/Kevin_Lytle and at facebook.com/KevinSLytle.
Lakewood vs. Fossil Ridge, 6 p.m. Thursday at French Field
Twitter updates: @Kevin_Lytle