Jim Rosa @jimrosa519
Today marked the beginning of the 2015 football season for the shore conference as official practices got underway. After visiting Point Boro camp, it clear that the optimism for this team may be at its highest that it has been with this group. The Panthers will look to build upon a successful 2014 campaign in which they went 5-5. Although a .500 finish was not enough to propel them into the Central Jersey Group II; it answered many questions as to how this group would fare. Looking ahead, this is how the panthers are shaping up.
Noah Husak is on the scene
After platooning as a backup to Jack Fitzsimmons in 2014, Noah Husak enters his senior season year with high expectations. The ability to form his throws with accuracy is what we saw from him in 2014. On a few occasions in particular we saw him complete throws over the middle that were nothing short of thirty to forty yards.” Noah has a strong arm”, Coach Sean Henry said. When asked about what he expects from Husak this year he added, “we expect big things, he is a big weight room kid, he can read the offense and we expect him to be a breakout player in the shore”. I later caught up with Noah to get his view on the upcoming 2015 season as a Panther.
Young players now vastly mature
After talking with Coach Henry, it appears that the young players he had on the field during 2013 are now ready to take that next step. After going 1-9 in 2013, the Panthers return key members of that team that contributed during a rebuilding season. This season many key players are now upperclassmen. This will provide the panthers with a great deal of leadership. They were able to battle through some of the growing pains that a high school football team will face after a year that includes the graduation of many key players of its senior core players. Noah Husak and Devin Connelly are seniors that will look to send this Panther team in the playoffs after nearly being eliminated last year. Hayden Fry will be a force at wideout as a junior this year.
Coach Henry stresses the importance of “being in shape”
Having a large sum of talent will simply do you no good if the players cannot stay in physical shape. After a day full of running and conditioning, the motto going around practice was “you win games in the 4th quarter”. Coach Henry had told his players to continue to eat right and to make sure that they are consistently keeping up with workouts. “The hardest day of the season is day one “, Henry added. The last thing that a coach wants to see is their team giving up a late lead in the 4th Quarter of a ball game. This is why the players did not touch a football on day one of practice. Defensively we are yet to see how this Panther team will come together. However, as we have seen in the past, long drives can tire out a defense.
Optimism may be the strongest player on the field
Perhaps one of the strongest talents a team can posess is their optimism and their belief in one another. Once again Husak addressed his team as a “brotherhood”. He is confident that his team will be able to score in clutch situations during the season. Both Noah and Coach Sean Henry attribute this brotherhood to the optimism of success they feel they will have this upcoming season. ” They are all great kids and they all work hard” Coach Henry explained. He says that he is confident in the chemistry of the team as well this upcoming season. Chemistry is always an important part of the offense as he know the abilities of Connolly and Fransceschini at the running back positions will enable open passes for his offense.
Final thoughts from Point Boro camp
This team clearly has what it takes to overcome a string of seasons that has not included a playoff berth. I expect this team to clearly improve on both sides of the ball; especially the offensive side of the ball with an explosive receiving core. That Core revolves around receivers Hayden Fry and Mike Waddleton. As I mentioned earlier the running back positions look to be a strong point for this team so far. Of course, this would not Pt. Boro football if running the ball was not a priority. In addition, the panthers will be exceptionally strong in an area that many high school teams lack. That area would be kicking. Colin Ansbach returns for the panthers in his senior season after making a high percentage of his field goals last season.
Make sure to check out the interviews from today’s camp
You can hear from Coach Sean Henry and QB Noah Husak Below