Stillman Valley looks to take the next step in the BNC

Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 6:53 PM CDT
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STILLMAN VALLEY, Ill. (WIFR) - For nearly three decades, Mike Lalor has roamed the sidelines leading the Stillman Valley football program. The Cardinals are no stranger to the playoffs, now it’s just about taking the next step.

Stillman Valley comes off an 8-win season and third straight postseason appearance. The team should have a nice mix of youth and experience. The Cardinals will have a lot more depth and double the seniors to lean on this year.

Lalor looks at center Andrew Forcier as the vocal leader of the team. He says the guys have worked hard this offseason but have yet to find an identity. Lalor believes it’ll take a couple games to figure that out, but they’re focused on week one.

“One game at a time. You know, we’re not going to worry about anyone else on the schedule right now except Byron, because that’s our first game,” explained Forcier. “So, 1-0 this week, our first week. I think that’s the mindset we need to take.”

“We’ve had it where you win a big game and that next week you can just completely lay an egg,” said Lalor. “We’ve had times where we look absolutely terrible in one week and you bounce back. That’s usually the sign of a better team, is how you handle, whether you win or lose, how do you handle it that following week. Because it’s easy when everything is going great, but it actually tells far more how you react when things are not so great.”

Stillman Valley hosts rival Byron to open the season on August 26. The Cardinals last beat the Tigers in 2019.

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