EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – In 2021, Riverside had its best season in over 20 years as the Rangers advanced all the way to the Class 4A Division I Regional Semifinals.

Their run ended there, though, in a disappointing loss to Springtown in Midland. Nine months later, Riverside is back on the field looking to get back to the Sweet 16, and perhaps get even farther.

Head coach Gary Recoder brings back 27 players from 2021, including 13 total starters that played a key role in Riverside’s run. Senior quarterback/running back duo Speedy Munoz and Jose Guardado return after both rushed for over 1,500 yards and Munoz nearly eclipsed 2,000 yards both through the air and on the ground.

District 1-4A Division I got a bit tougher with Austin dropping down from Class 5A Division II, but the Rangers will likely be the favorite to repeat as champions.

“Expectations are high, we expect to be exactly where we ended last year. That’s a goal the boys made right after the loss to Springtown. At the end of the day we’re trying to get out of the region,” said Recoder.

Riverside will open the season at home on Aug. 26 vs. rival Ysleta at 7 p.m. The first episode of KTSM’s 9 Overtime will air that night at 4 p.m.