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Valle Faces Long Road



URBANA — Tradition returns to the football field this week as venerable state powerhouse Valle Catholic travels three-plus hours to Skyline.

Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

Longtime Valle Catholic head coach Judd Naeger expects a more competitive game this year — much different from the Warriors’ 48-0 whitewash in 2020. They outgained Skyline 486-257 in total yards.

“Skyline proved to be a very good team who just happened to not play up to their potential versus us last year,” Naeger said. “They only lost by eight points to the eventual Class 1 champion (Windsor).”

The Tigers will return plenty of firepower on offense, with Dylan Mountain an all-state quarterback. They also have speed at wide receiver.

Naeger said Skyline will run a spread offense, and both 3-4 and 4-2 alignments on defense.

The biggest obstacle Valle Catholic could face this week is travel. The distance between the Valle Desert and Skyline High School is 214.8 miles, with an one-way trip lasting on average three hours, 37 minutes.

“The trip will certainly be something we need to manage,” Naeger said. “We will get a charter bus, leave early, and make a couple of stops.”

Naeger said the players are brimming with excitement to get the season started.

“We have put in a lot of good work in the weight room and practice field,” the coach commented. “This group has a quiet confidence, and a chip on their shoulder. We are excited to see what personality this team takes on.”

Valle Catholic is coming off a nine-win season, the school’s first since the Missouri State High School Activities Association bumped them from Class 1 to Class 3.

Last Friday night, the season began with a four-team scrimmage at Dragon Field in Ste. Genevieve versus the in-town rival Dragons, St. Pius X and Park Hills Central.