Heat is on receiver, Copper Hills this fall Utah-bound senior Moeai has big goals for himself, Grizzlies this seasonBy Maggie Thach
The Salt Lake Tribune
Salt Lake TribuneArticle Last Updated:07/12/2007 02:34:21 PM MDT
Though receiver Kendrick Moeai will be practicing with his Copper Hills football teammates in 100-plus degree weather this week, he can take a big sigh of relief.
That's because the upcoming senior has decided what school he will play at - the
"Everyone is just nice and friendly. People are relaxed, down to earth," Moeai said about the environment at
The biggest goal being to improve the Grizzlies' reputation as a legitimate football team. Copper Hills hasn't hosted a home playoff game since it opened in 1995. Moeai hopes he can change that before he becomes a Ute.
"We've had struggling years," Moeai said. "Last season, our record was a lot of losses and very few wins."
Seven losses and three wins to be exact. And the year before? 3-7. In 2005, Copper Hills went 1-9. The closest the Grizzlies have gotten to a .500 record this decade was in 2004, when they were 5-6.
Because of their history, Moeai is aware the Grizzlies most likely will be taken lightly by their opponents this fall but he believes 2007 will be their breakout year.
"Now we're all clicking together," Moeai said. "The senior class, we've been together since we were 8 years old. There's a lot of talent in this region but we have a lot of players that should be good."
Along with Moeai, the Grizzlies return Sealver Siliga (committed to Brigham Young) and quarterback Jacob Lisonbee.
Head coach Art Erickson thinks that core of players is strong enough to get Copper Hills into a playoff game for the first time since 2004.
"We look to them to carry their load," Erickson said. "But they have other players around them that are capable and will complement them."
Moeai plans to help his team to a playoff berth by becoming the Class 5-A Most Valuable Player - at least, that's his goal.
"I want to be the top receiver in the state," Moeai said.
Before that happens, Moeai and his teammates must survive two-a-day practices in triple-digit temperatures. But Moeai has so much to prove in his senior season that he doesn't mind.
"We start next week," Moeai said. "I can't wait to get out there. It's going to be fun."