Team makes it to the second round of play off game

By Rachel McNew, Feature Editor — Working hard since June, pushing through adversity one game at a time, ignoring the blood, sweat and tears for the past 11 weeks is what the wolf pack did to achieve their success. In week 10, the football team took home the Federal League Championship title as they hammered the Perry Panthers. This was their first Federal League title since 2011. Beating the odds, in week 11, they won their first playoff game against the Berea Titans, scoring the eagles a spot in the sweet sixteen.

Winning the FLC was the goal for most of the players during the season. It was a goal that was valued by the whole team, but was something that each and every senior wanted to taste. The last time the Eagles won, the current seniors were freshmen. The hard work they put in the past four years to reach this title again as a varsity squad was finally paid off.

“I was proud of my team, it was a great feeling knowing we did what a GlenOak team has not done in years, we are finally getting out what we put in,” senior football player Jmon Wells said.

Each player was ready for their last Federal League game. This was also their last home game of the season. For seniors, winning this game was crucial to end their last regular season right.

“Beating Perry was so important because we wanted to make this season so memorable and now winning the FLC made that happen for us,” senior football player Evan Maley said.

After the FLC win, the boys knew they had to stay humble and prepare for round one of playoffs against Berea. Winning against Berea 28-14 on their home field, they took with them a set spot in the last 16 teams in the state. This moment for the football team was one to rememeber.

“This win means I get to play another week with my family. I never want this season to end and this whole team is looking forward to next weeks game against Mentor,” senior football player Kyle Hall said.

The next step on this journey for the Eagles is the second playoff game. This game will be held at the University of Akron against Mentor. Mentor has been a fierce competitor in the state for many years and has made it far in playoffs for the past few years too. Mentor is a Division I program with about twice as many kids as the school. The team knows what they have to do this week in order to be a tough contender against this program.

Head Coach Scott Garcia is proud of his players for accomplishing what they have. He knows the next week of practice will be crucial.

“We will have to play very well against this team, they were in the state championship last year and is one of the top programs in the state, focusing this whole week will be essential,” Garcia said.

The football team has a huge week ahead of them, but with being the third outright team in Eagle history to make it to the sweet 16, the Golden Eagles have something special about their team no matter the outcome.

[Updated Aug. 8, 2017: This article has been reformatted for consistency.]