The road hasn’t been easy for the Dublin Lions football team, but knowing it’s about to get a lot tougher once district begins has head coach Bob Cervetto keen on getting a head start on their opposition during the team’s bye week.

Through five games this season, the Lions currently are winless. Regardless of what anyone thinks, the team has progressed each week. But with a 48-0 loss to Bosqueville in their non-district finale, the result showed several weak spots that Cervetto plans to fix before next week.

“There were some things that we didn’t do coaching wise. The kids gave us a great effort, but we just started off slow,” he said. “We need to do a better job at coaching. If we do that than we’re putting the team in a better position to win. We just need to coach better moving forward.”

With the first half of their schedule now behind them, Dublin isn’t dwelling on the past and Cervetto says the team is up for the challenge that awaits them.

“We’ve had some great days of workouts. The kids all understand what we’re trying to do and why we scheduled who we did,” he said. “We’re about to take on four schools that are currently ranked in the top 12 in the state. We needed to let them know what it is that they’re up against and what they can expect week in and week out.”

Coming into the season the goal for Dublin was clear. Making the postseason was all that mattered. After back-to-back bi-district championships, the craving for postseason play is still plentiful. Despite a less than brilliant start, the opportunity to achieve that goal is still there for the taking.

“We’ve told the kids since the beginning that our goal is to have an opportunity to make the big dance. It may come down to the last game of the season,” Cervetto said. “It’s a tough district and the kids have had great attitudes all season long. They’ve known when they’ve played well and when we have struggled. We’re looking forward to the second half and seeing how we respond to everything thus far.”

That response will certainly be key. Cervetto says one conclusion comes to his mind when he thinks about what the one thing is the Lions must improve upon to have success in their district schedule.

“We’ve got to play four quarters of football. We were hit and miss in non-district,” he said. “We’d play two quarters well in one game, then maybe one or two in the next. We essentially were only playing well for a half of football each week. We need to play all four in order to have a chance to compete. It’s that simple.”

With games against Cisco, Eastland, Tolar, Bangs and Coleman looming, the difficulty of the test doesn’t have to be explained. 

“These are the money games. Everything we’ve done so far this season was to prepare for these upcoming games. We’ve played teams with speed, size and a mixture of the two. Nothing we see in district should surprise us. We just have to get ready and we have to play ball and play four quarters of it,” Cervetto said.

The Lions are scheduled to begin district play on Friday, Oct. 7, at 7:30 p.m. when they travel to take on Cisco.