EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – After losing two of the most explosive players in the city to graduation, you’d be forgiven if you thought Riverside might take a step back in 2023.

The Rangers lost running back Jose Guardado and quarterback Angel Munoz, a duo that did as much as any two players in program history. Munoz parlayed it into a spot on the New Mexico State football team this fall.

But despite losing that pair, plus some other important skill players, what Riverside returns is just as important. 14 total starters – seven on each side of the football – are back for the Rangers, including the entire starting offensive line.

“Life goes on and the program continues. Those seniors left a mark and a standard and these kids are carrying on that standard for sure,” said Rangers head coach Gary Recoder.

Riverside went 9-2 and won the District 1-4A Division I title in 2022, before a heartbreaking loss in the Bi-District playoffs. Recoder said that loss is driving the Rangers this fall.

The Rangers will have to find a new quarterback to replace Munoz, but Recoder is confident in his options to do so. Behind big offensive linemen like Devan Quintana, Riverside could be a favorite in their district again.

“The experience we have, I feel like we have a lot of great talent even with those guys gone and we’re ready,” said Riverside senior center Manny Garcia.

Riverside will open the 2023 season at home on Aug. 25 against rival Ysleta. Tune in to the season premiere of 9 Overtime that same night on KTSM at 10:15 p.m.