Everything in life usually comes around full circle. That was the lesson learned this off season by Coach Cavaliere as he was hired as the Head Coach of the Stratford Football team. Coach Cavaliere was a member of this staff from 2004-2009 under then Head Coach, Duane Shirden. He left the program when Coach Shirden stepped down and is now back and ready to take on the challenges of bringing this once proud program back to its past glory.
He knows that this is not a challenge he can take on alone and therefore he has tried to put together a strong staff that have many different talents with which they can help the program. He has gotten several teachers from the building including Mr. Avery and Mr. Stolze. He has retained several members from the last staff due to the job they did working with the kids and their motivation to see this program move forward. These members include: Coach Branco, Coach Booker, and Coach Johnston. He has also reached out to a few former players who have played at higher levels to come back and share their knowledge with the current team. These players include: Robert Peck, Collin Dillon, and Dudley LaPorte. And lastly he has made a nice connection to the middle school by picking up a member of their staff, Coach Palmucci, to coach the freshman team and make the players’ transition easier.
As we know though, the coaches don’t make the team. It is the players who can get out there and make things happen. This year the new staff hopes to find the right players for the spots on the field and allow each player to develop not only as an athlete, but also as a man. The coaches seem to think that they have enough players to play primarily one way football. This will allow the player to work with their position coach all week to enhance the skills that they will be using on the field.
Offensively, the team will be looking to be a run based team. With the stable of players that are available this will allow many members of the backfield to touch the ball and it will force opposing defenses to respect many players’ abilities and tackle one on one in space. It seems as if Gueber Docteur and Devon Davidson will battle it out to see who takes over at the helm. In the backfield, players like Sam Breiner, Nate Shields, Brett Patrick, Marjhae Clarke, and others will battle for time. Up front players like Cayman Durost, Adam Diaz, Luis Villanueva, Billy MacDonald, and others will lead the way.
Defensively, Coach Avery will be using a defense similar to the one used by last year’s team. The strength of the defense will be the defensive line with players like Pat Lepesko, Marc Acevedo, Mar’Quess Daniels, and John Cox leading the charge. The line-backer core will be a battle from the get go, with many players having a chance to see playing time. In the secondary, players like Brad Derry, Mike LaPia, Freddie Clarke and others will look to shut down the opposing passing attack.
As the summer months get hotter, the boys will be working hard to prepare for the grueling task of moving this program in the right direction. In the past few years, they have been a bottom tier SWC team, but with some luck and a lot of hard work this program can move up the ranks in the league.