WHS Football Faces Early Challenges

Thomas Campbell, Staff Writer

It’s 2014 and the start of a new football season with high expectations. Weedsport Varsity Football has started the season 2-2 after last year, going undefeated in the regular season. The Warriors have defeated rival Port Byron and Watertown IHC and lost in a tight battle against the very talented Utica-Notre Dame Jugglers and Sandy Creek Comets. Despite these loses, Weedsport still has hope of achieving its goal of making it to the Dome.

Weedsport always has the goal of making it to the Dome every year and even with a losses to the Jugglers and the Comets, they still believe they can do it. “It was a good learning experience,” says Hunter Bowden, the Warriors senior Quarterback and captain.

Mike Chirco, Weedsport’s senior Captain and linebacker says, “In regular season if you come home with a 6-1 record, it is considered a down year.” This shows the team plans on going undefeated every season no matter what. This year has not gone according to plan.

Every team has their strengths and their weaknesses, but one thing the team is comfortable about is their roster. “We are a very experienced team, we have a lot of juniors and seniors playing which is nice,” says Bowden “We’re starting to gel with offense and getting better.”

Offense didn’t seem to be a problem after scoring 20 plus points in all four games. “Our passing game has become strong,” says JJ O’Connor, the junior slot receiver and safety. “We have been traditionally a big time running school.”  With Bowden’s three main targets JJ O’Connor, Steve Nemec, and  Austin Napolitano, all over six feet tall, it makes it a lot easier for Bowden to hit his mark.

The team definitely has its weaknesses too, but Bowden says, “If we stay focused, we really don’t have any weaknesses.”

“As receivers, we have to be able to catch the ball,” says O’Connor.

The Warriors, have had a couple of missed opportunities in their games caused by missed catches. “We’re not very deep in the offensive line, so the backups need to know their plays,” says Chirco.

“Everybody has a job to do,” says Bowden.

One key part that both Bowden and Chirco both said, were the running backs, who are both seniors. Captains Malique Wright and Ryan Quigley do most of the running for Weedsport. “They have been our work horse’s last couple of years” says Bowden.

O’Connor says, “Our key part is definitely is our front seven, I think they could be the best in the section.” They proved that in all four games by getting to the Quarterback with no problem at all.

For most football teams, every game is important but all three players said the most important game of the season was Sandy Creek. Weedsport  lost to 35-28.

“We have some redemption on our hands from our sophomore year for us seniors” says Chirco. Even though the Warriors lost two games they are hungry and are on the road this week against 3-1   Cato-Meridian Blue Devils on Friday at 7:00 p.m.