Packers set to host Rochester Mayo for Homecoming

Published 7:36 pm Wednesday, September 26, 2012

The Packers are done celebrating their first win of the season and they’re hoping to keep the momentum rolling as they prepare to host Rochester Mayo in Austin’s Homecoming football game in Art Hass Stadium Friday at 7 p.m.

The week of Homecoming can be fun and exciting for students, but for coaches it can be a bit frustrating at times. Austin head coach Brett Vesel said he’s trying to keep his squad focused on the task at hand.

“It’s a lot of distractions,” he said. “It’ll be like any other game for us, but we’ll have more people supporting us. We’re telling them to stay focused and to remember that the most enjoyable part of homecoming is winning the game.”

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The Spartans (3-1 overall, 3-0 Big Nine) come into the game unbeaten in the conference, but three of their wins came against Winona (0-4 overall, 0-3 Big Nine), Mankato East (0-4 overall, 0-3 Big Nine) and Rochester Century (1-3 overall, 1-2 Big Nine).

Vesel expects Mayo to come in with a tough team on Friday.

“They have a really good running game and their quarterback is really efficient,” Vesel said. “Their defense looks solid and it’ll be a competitive game.”

Austin made a couple of lineup adjustments last week and the team continues to look to make a few more changes. Vesel said the players who changed positions last week are coming along and there will some other position changes this week as well.

The Packers (1-3 overall, 1-2 Big Nine) are coming off an 18-0 win over Mankato East, which was their first win in 23 tries. Vesel said the game has given his team a perspective it never had before.

“Practice has been really good this week and everybody is stepping up their game,” he said. “I think they’re finally starting to get (what it takes to win). In football, you’ve gotta execute for four quarters and you’ve got to your job for the whole game.”