With 7 wins in 2018, Wink had a taste of success. After a second-round exit in the playoffs, this year’s objective is simple.
“Our word was finish, because last year we didn’t do a good job of finishing,” said senior quarterback Nicholas Gray. “We just went out there and got the job done, but we didn’t finish.”
“It doesn’t matter if it’s a conditioning drill or a mesh drill or whatever it is – we’re trying to finish hard,” said head coach Brian Gibson.
The Wildcats have good reason to be optimistic. Offensively, Gray sets the tone as quarterback. As a junior, Gray threw for 2,276 yards and 21 touchdowns with 10 interceptions.
However, Wink will have a large void to fill in the receiving corps. Wade Halterman was one of the most prolific players in all of the Permian Basin.
As a senior, Halterman piled up more than half of the Wildcats’ total receiving yards (1,327/2,385) along with 16 touchdowns.
The new leaders for that group still remember the lessons they learned from Halternamn.
“You can’t put your head down,” said junior J.B. Fostel. “You can’t put your head down. You’re going to run the wrong route, you’re going to forget the play, but as long as you just go back the next play and get ready to go then we’ll be in good shape.”
The talent isn’t just on the offensive side either. The Wildcats have 18 of their total starters back on the team, but they know that doesn’t guarantee anything.
“If we don’t come together and mesh and gel together, then talent won’t get us very far,” said Gibson.
“This is my last year. I don’t have another chance, so I want to make it to State,” said Gray. “I want to win it.”