Get ready for the ‘Battle on the Mountain’ |

Get ready for the ‘Battle on the Mountain’

Chris Freud

So what if it’s May?

You’re a football fan it’s been nearly three weeks since the NFL Draft … and you’re getting Mel Kiper Jr. withdrawal. It’s still two months until training camp and you can only watch so much of the NFL Channel on the dish.

It’s OK. We’ve got some football for you, It’s the “Battle on the Mountain,” a semipro charity game between the Denver Pirates and the Northern Colorado Wolfpack Saturday at 6 p.m. at Huskies Stadium in Eagle-Vail.

Tickets to the game are $5 at the door and all proceeds benefit Battle Mountain football.

“These teams have to pay a pretty high premium to play on the fields down in Denver,” Huskies head coach Pat Engle said. “They’re not going to be taking any of the gate. They’re more than happy to do this to have a place to play.”

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And, the result is that local football fans will get a chance to see some high quality football before the leaves turn in the High Country.

“I would say you’re going to be seeing quite a few former college players and players who have been in NFL camps,” Engle said. “I was looking at the Northern Colorado Wolfpack’s roster and there were some big guys. So, I’m looking forward to seeing the level of football they’ll be playing.”

Whatever the scoreboard says after the game, the real winner will be the Huskies. According to Engle, the team needs to get jerseys, fund a summer football camp and pay off some of the new equipment in the weight room.

Then, with Battle Mountain’s re-entry into the 3A Slope this fall, there’s the funding of the trip to Cortez. That trip requires hotel rooms for the players and coaches as well as three to four meals.

The game also serves as sort of an unofficial heads-up that football is on the way. Engle, quite frankly, sounds like he is ready to start the season now. Moreover, he hopes this game will get his team and the school pumped for the 2004 season.

“We’ve had tremendous participation in the weight room,” he said. “In the period between basketball and when spring sports started, we had 30-40 kids in the weight room. We’re expecting to get 40-50 (sophomores through seniors) to come out this fall and another 20-25 freshmen. We’ve done a lot of work in the offseason to create interest in the football program.”

For more information, call Engle at (970) 845-1025.

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