Poart Edwards (OnFocus) – It’s been a long wait for football fans and football teams to start the 2020 season. The wait is finally over, and the season is now here.
We take a look at the Port Edwards Blackhawks with our Season Preview. We reached out to Coach Max Ayres for some thoughts on this football season, giving us a glimpse into how the Blackhawks are getting ready for this year.
OnFocus: How has your coaching staff and team prepared for this season?
Ayres: Our team and the coaching staff began the season with an open mind. We know and understand the risks coming into the season and know that our season could be in jeopardy if we don’t follow specific guidelines and procedures. Our team has done a great job limiting the risks and doing what we can to keep our season alive. Obviously, the student-athletes want to play, they don’t want their season taken from them. For some student-athletes, this is the only sport they play, so they are doing everything they can to get back on the field.
I give a lot of credit to our administration for giving us the opportunity to make this happen. I also give credit to the families who allowed their student-athletes to do what they love and that is play football. Lastly, I give our players a lot of credit too because they knew coming into this season we would have to adapt to the times, and they have done everything they have been asked to do and continue to do it with a positive attitude.
OnFocus: What are some positives that have come out of practice and the season being delayed?
Our athletes and coaches have been prepping for the season since all the way back when school shut down in March. They knew they didn’t want this football season to be taken away from them. We used our five contact days in July (wearing masks if needed), athletes held captains’ practice during the month of August, and our administration allowed us to run a strength and conditioning program during the summer all under the guidelines set by the health department. So many people and community members have been involved in making this season happen and every day our coaching staff gets to work with our athletes is a blessing.
The kids we have want to be involved, they want to be coached, they want to win, but most importantly, they have a passion for being a good human being. We have a great group of kids who we are teaching how to be successful football players, but also how to be successful, impactful citizens in the community as well. That is what our program is all about.
OnFocus: Season forecast – What should fans expect to see out of your team this year?
Fans should expect our team to compete in every game we play. We have talent on both sides of the football that should give us the opportunity to be in every game we play. All conference players such as Quinton Tranel (1st team QB/CB), Alex Hernandez (1st team WR/CB), Zack Petersen (2nd Team TE), Carson Parks, Timmy Tranel, Jesse Maher, and Paul Stormoen will be leaned on this season. We lost an outstanding player in Eli Bristow (Defensive player of the year last season), so we have some big shoes to fill, but our coaching staff is going to put our athletes in the best position to give our team a chance to win on a weekly basis.
We also welcome a talented athlete David Gibbs back to our program and a freshman class that has a chance to contribute early on. Players on the offensive line have to step up and learn quickly to contribute this season. That group is young, but they have some football knowledge that should help us this season. After winning a share of the conference title last season, our team learned how to win and they want to continue to do that this season. We are all looking forward to getting back on the gridiron and playing football. Our guys are excited, the coaching staff is excited, and our loyal fanbase is ready to cheer us on too. I want to wish all the teams the best of luck this season, stay safe, stay healthy, and enjoy high school sports again!
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