The Martin football program has gone six seasons since making a run at the postseason, but after a close miss in 2012, the Tigers say they are ready for that streak to come to an end.
Things look bright for Martin in the upcoming season, with a number of returning players including quarterback Albert Estrada, who will be in his third season under center and according to coaches has made a number of strides in the off-season.
"We're real pleased with his growth and his maturity coming into this football season because he's taking it differently than he has the last two which we're really happy to see." (David Charles, Martin head coach)
It's not just quarterback where the Tigers have experience but a number of key defensive positions as well.
"This is my third year on varsity and I have Chavez coming back, and our quarterback is a three year veteran as well, so we have some pretty good talent coming back this year." (David Reyes, Martin linebacker)
One spot they will need fresh blood to step up is at the running back spot where Rudy Castillo has graduated. Coach Charles is confident he has the horses ready to step in and keep things rolling.
“We have about three guys that are getting the bulk of the carries right now. One being Alexis Navarro, one being Victor Resendez and another being one of our young guys Johnny Valdivia."
"With how much we run the ball, it's always good to have two or three running backs ready to go."
Now as they get ready for the regular season the leaders on this team are ready to prove the Tigers belong in the 4A playoffs.
"Our intensity this year is much higher than in years past. I'm trying to take it on myself to push our team to a higher level than last year."
"Playoffs would mean everything to us right now. I mean '07, that's the last time they made it. We expect to make it this year.” (Juan Diaz Chavez, Martin linebacker)
"Our team's much better this year. We expect playoffs and nothing less than that."
The Tigers have one scrimmage left before kicking off their 2013 schedule in the Valley against the Roma Gladiators on August 30th.