Football team faces tough challenges in DCL

By Zack Miller and Sammie Levin
Published: September 2009

South’s Varsity Football Team has faced numerous difficulties in the past years, but both the players and coaches seem optimistic that this season will turn out unusually well.

Amongst their recent challenges, including the ongoing field construction and the loss of a strong group of graduating seniors including Derek Russell, the team has persevered.

Varsity coach Ted Delicandro commented that, although he greatly enjoyed coaching last year’s team, “to lose three games by a total of six points is frustrating and disappointing at the same time.

Despite last years record of four wins and seven losses both the players and coaches feel that the game was played at a higher level than it has in pervious years.

Many of their games were tremendously close, and were often fought bitterly to the last point. This surge of skill and talent has elevated South’s team to a status far above the “doormat of the league that it once was.
With a roster full of experienced players from last year, talent is not thought to be a main issue facing the team. Delicandro has commented that one of the largest obstacles will be learning to buckle down in the fourth quarter and overcome adversity.

Many have voiced skepticism about South’s ability to become a force on the field without last year’s star players, but senior and co-captain Lucas Walker feels the team is heading in a very positive direction.
“Whenever you have 20 seniors on a team that’s a huge positive, especially when a lot of those seniors have a lot of game experience, he said. “Our senior leadership is going to take us to the next level and to one of the best seasons in South football history.

The presence of experienced players will undoubtedly be a vital resource for the team. In addition, Walker is optimistic that the loss of seniors from other teams will even out the competition across the board.
“Our team is going to be less affected by the loss of last year’s seniors compared to other teams we play, because we didn’t have a lot of senior starters last year. Our team was mostly made up of juniors who are now entering their senior year, Walker said.

One of the most vital losses was All-Star quarterback Derek Russell who has been replaced by junior Justin Klumpp.

Klumpp has proven to be a worthy player , and he understands the role he must live up to.

“[Being head quarterback] is a lot of pressure, but I think I handled it well, and I know I’ll never be Derek Russell but I can still help the team win.

The positive attitude that has spread through the team about the season seems to be outweighing the difficulties they have faced. It seems that South is finally gearing up for an unprecedented season of very high level competition.

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