Last Saturday, the Allegheny football team won their NCAC opener against Hiram.
“I was ecstatic for them,” Coach Mark Matlak said. “We’ve had a lot of guys that haven’t stuck with it, but for the ones who did, seeing their faces of pure joy was awesome. They were rewarded for all of their hard work.”
Andrew Niklaus, ’15, said the team’s biggest goal this year is to revive the tradition of Allegheny football and getting this first win of the year was the most crucial part of accomplishing that goal.
“Last year we had an upsetting season with not having a win. This was a huge stepping stone to where we want to go,” Ron Borne, ’15, said. Borne was named NCAC Defensive Player of the Week for the game on September 20.
“I was thrilled and honored to receive the recognition,” Borne said.
The team has been working hard this season to improve and has made many changes.
Borne said the team effort was tremendous and they worked hard during their bye week and practices during game week.
“I think there are three things I try to teach them,” Matlak said. “First to win in the classroom, meaning to do the right thing, go to class, complete assignments, and that carries into winning at practice which is a total process for winning and seeing results on Saturday.”
The team has been working to put the previous seasons behind them and focus on what this season will bring for them.
“Not all games are going to be easy and we have to keep sticking with it,” Matlak said. “The know they can do it, there is talent and potential.”
Niklaus said the team did a good job of sticking to their offensive game plan.
“Our goal was to run a play every 20 seconds and keep the defense on their heels,” Niklaus said. “We ran 89 plays total and did an excellent job of establishing our fast paced offense.”
Matlak said a the team is focusing on each game as it comes to them.
“I am talking to the team about one game seasons,” Matlak said. “We have eight mini games left and we can keep improving. It’s like a mini Super Bowl each game.”
Borne said he is looking forward to seeing the team continue to improve.
“I look forward to seeing the team put in proper preparation to be in a position to win,” Borne said.
The football team will travel to Wabash on Sept. 27.