Weekly Update - 9.4.2018
Thank you to all the people who came out and supported the team last Friday! We had a great crowd and your presence was definitely felt on the field. In addition, all the letters of support that we received were uplifting and very much appreciated. Your words of encouragement helps reinforce what we believe to be true - the culture surrounding our program is changing, and that we have started making progress towards becoming an elite program. After the exciting roller coaster of a game on Friday, we continue to find a lot of positive takeaways.
Our players have great character. Down two scores at halftime, our boys fought back to take the lead 32-30 in Quarter 3. They were resilient and gave relentless effort until the final whistle. Earlier during the day, our team organized the first ever Spartan Challenge at Olympia West. The Spartan Challenge is a fun event in which our athletes, along with 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders, participate in various games and obstacle courses. Our players did a great job encouraging these young students to push through the different challenges. Everyone stepped up and served as true role models - and we had a great time!
We are exciting to watch. There were explosive plays on both sides of the ball. Our offense made vast improvements since the first game. We had over 300 rushing, including 200 by Matthew Cooksey and another 100 yards by Grant Kessinger. Included among this were several offensive plays of 20+ yards. Much of the credit for this goes to our offensive line (Landon Alcorn, Drew Bedwell, Gaven Vannoy, Ayden Winterland, and Lane Miller) who dominated the line of scrimmage all night long. Defensively, we put several vicious hits on STM, forced 3 turnovers, and shut them out in the 4th quarter of the game. Kaden Seeman made several tremendous plays including a huge interception. I was also very pleased with our kicking game. Cooksey had several great punts and all of his kickoffs were fantastic. Lastly, we were 4/4 on 2 point conversion attempts.
Maybe the most promising, however, is the sense of brotherhood that is emerging. The guys are learning to put their differences aside to accomplish the common goal of victory. We are building a sense of mutual respect and trust among the team. They do not point fingers when something goes wrong, they are learning to pick each other up! Our theme this week is Find A Way. Great teams, often against all odds, Find A Way to win. We were 14 yards away from victory last week. If we are fortunate enough to be in that situation again this week, we have to Find A Way to do the things we need to do to ensure victory. We are very excited about our game this week against Rantoul and we hope that a big crowd is willing to travel with us (there is nothing like home field advantage on the road).