LOCKWOOD — On Friday night, the Eastern A will welcome its newest varsity football program to the mix.
The Lockwood Lions will make their debut after spending three years preparing for the moment.
“From the first day as freshman all the way through fall camp and into this week, getting better every day and doing the little things right and at the end of the day everything is going to pay off," Lockwood head coach Rob DiGiallonardo said. "That’s what we’re hoping for this week."
“It’s felt long, but it’s gone by fast. It’s been a lot of hard work, a lot of conditioning trying to get ready for it all," said senior Dylan Byrd.
Lockwood brought some momentum into fall camp after picking up a few victories during last year’s JV schedule. That’s gone a long way boosting the morale at practice.
“It was definitely a good mental boost considering the last two years we kind of lost a lot of games. Last year was just a good mental boost for us," senior Micah Reeves said.
“Winning breeds success and gets more kids out. All summer we’ve had confidence going into things," DiGiallonardo said. "I think that was tremendous for us last year just getting a some wins and rolling that success into this summer and fall camp and building their confidence.”
The Lions get thrown to the proverbial wolves right away, as they get Eastern A powerhouse Billings Central in Week 1. Lockwood will know if it’s ready for big boy football, as the Rams feature one of the best backfield tandems in the state in Kade Boyd and University of Montana commit Clay Oven.
“It’s great. To play against the best right away, I wouldn’t want it any other way. They’re the pinnacle of Class A football. Like you said, they’re in there every year. They’re always in the running," DiGiallonardo said. "That’s who we’ve got to play with and compete with if we want to be in the running at the Class A level, so we’ll see how we do.”
Kickoff between Central and Lockwood is slated for 7 p.m. at Herb Klindt Field on the Campus of Rocky Mountain College.