By Ryan Costello, Staff Writer
Enid News and Eagle
Before 2013, Joey Reinart had never been 2-0.
Not as a coach, certainly, and the fifth-year Chisholm head man couldn’t remember ever starting with two-game win streaks as an assistant in Perry or at John Marshall.
As a program, Chisholm’s last 2-0 start was in 2007 under Dan Maly, a season that finished 5-5.
That, of course, was well before the careers of every current CHS player, many of whom have played in one winless season (0-10 in 2010) and none of whom have been with the team for a winning one.
So how does a newly successful group handle a 2-0 start? One that’s widely expected to improve to 3-0 at 7:30 p.m. Friday against homestanding Blackwell? And how about when that’s the last stop before back-to-back games against divisional foes Alva and Hennessey?
Turns out, all those down years in the past make it easier not to look too far into the future.
“We haven’t ever had the opportunity, or the ability to ever (look past an opponent),” said Reinart, 9-31 in his first four seasons. “It’s not something that even crosses their minds. They’re going out and looking for a win. They’re starting to know how to win games and starting to learn what it takes to get to the next one, so I think they’re just looking for another win.”
Bryce Stewart, one of the most-turned cogs in the Longhorns’ ground-mulching machine — 496 yards in two games — didn’t take the bait, either.
“Nah,” said Stewart, Chisholm’s leading rusher at 399 yards and four scores. “We know what our goal is.”
That continues Friday, when Chisholm will be in the recently rare position of heavy favorite against an 0-2 Blackwell team that has scored six points in two games this season. The Maroons were shut out 13-0 last week against Chisholm’s 2A-1 foe Newkirk, which surrendered 41 points to Class A Crescent in a loss the week before.
Being picked to win does bear weight for a team that has so rarely done it.
“We’re always the underdog in everything,” said Stewart, a senior. “It feels good. We’ve worked so hard from such a young age, from whenever I was a freshman going 0-10 … It gives my team more confidence knowing that we have people with us.”
Just in case, Reinart has drilled his Longhorns not to focus too much on the marquee matchups with Alva and Hennessey, or for that matter, on last week’s main event against Fairview, a 14-6 Chisholm win and the team’s first in the series in eight seasons.
“The confidence is there for them to keep building on that,” Reinart said.
“It’s not something that we’re gonna sit there and dwell on for the rest of the year. That’s not the end of our season right there. They’re looking for the end result.”