Bear Lake High School
Conference: 2A South East Idaho Conference
Head Coach: Ryan Messerly
Years as Head Coach: 1st Season
Previous Experience: 4 years as Bear Lake JV Head Coach
Record Last Year: 4-4
State Titles: None
Theron Wallentine, QB, Junior
Bridger Steele, TE-DE, Senior
Daymon Shaul, LB-WR, Senior
“Key Players” lost from last year:
Incoming “impact” players:
Written by: Matt Harris (@IdahoSportsMatt)
The Bear Lake football program has seen its fair share of ups and downs.
From 2009-2011, the Bears won two of a possible 24 games. Certainly, it was tough on the program. Losing can challenge a team mentally.
In 2011, Jared Farmer took the reigns of the program and helped the 2A school in Montpelier rise from the doldrums of defeat. While the first season record-wise was forgettable, from 2012-2014 the Bears finished at the .500 mark in the regular season each year. But they couldn’t get past the first round of the playoffs as Teton (2012), Sugar-Salem (2013), and North Fremont (2014) ended their hopes of advancing.
Now, in 2015, there’s a new lead man in the program who hopes to take Bear Lake to heights they’ve never achieved in school history. That man is Ryan Messerly.
The new head coach knows of the history of the program. He served as the head coach of the junior varsity team the last four seasons and is familiar with student-athletes he will be leading. And he is excited about what the future will bring.
“I’m most excited about all of the young athletes we have in our program,” Messerly said.
Indeed they do. The Bears are led by junior quarterback Theron Wallentine and returning seniors Bridger Steele and Daymon Shaul. Add in to the mix Mason Garbett, Sam Roberts, and Josh Transtrum, and Bear Lake has a nice core to build around.
The Bears do lose a few key players from last season, including Justin Transtrom, Isaac Tafoya, and Brennen “The Bus” Williams. But Messerly feels that Bear Lake is ready to turn a corner and to continue their upward climb with the kids coming up in the program.
“Our skill positions are very strong this year and will be for years to come,” he said.
He mentioned the importance of execution on every down as a key factor in turning that corner.
Defensively, the Bears staff knows that there are changes to be made and schemes to be devised for a unit that gave up 40 or more points in 5-of-9 games last season. Messerly focused on execution as a point of emphasis for all football related activities.
“We want to ‘Win The Day’,” he said. “We do that by working and executing the details of the day.”
Messerly expounded on execution and how it not only helps on the field, but also how it helps in everyday life and in his role as leader.
“I coach for the love of the game and to be a positive influence on the kids,” he said. “I hope to teach them life lessons that they can use to become successful in their own lives.”
Bear Lake opens the season August 28th at home vs. Cokeville, WY.