The Genesis of Reagan's Football Team
How Reagan's First Football Team Came to Be
WRITTEN BY KRISTEN LEER
AUGUST 26, 2015
AUGUST 26, 2015
The chant “Here we go, Huskies, here we go!” rumbled throughout the bleachers at the Pulaski High School stadium. Continuing to get louder as more fans, teachers, students, and parents piled in to see how Reagan’s, now independent, football team was going to play out their first game. As their chanting got louder, the marching band played harder, the spirit squad cheered louder, and the screams from the fans all sounded in unison as the energy of the football team skyrocketed from this admirable level of support. The question is: How did this all come to be?
“It sort of grew along with the school itself,” said Mr. Roman, the head coach...
“It sort of grew along with the school itself,” said Mr. Roman, the head coach of the football team and history teacher. “Reagan was a co-op team with Pulaski, and it soon grew to a point where the roster over there was more Reagan kids, like by far more than anything else. We felt like as the school continued to grow and the number of Reagan kids on the roster continued to grow, we could support our own football team.”
This was a better decision in the long run. Mr. Roman said, “A lot of people don’t understand this, but what Reagan kids would have to go through to play football was very time consuming.” When Reagan was playing with Pulaski their routine would be to get out of school at 2:45 p.m., get on a shuttle bus to go to Pulaski, and wait for an hour because Pulaski’s final bell isn’t till 3:55 p.m. Finally their practice would start at 4:15 p.m., not ending until approximately 6:15pm.
“It’s going to be neat for the kids to wear their jerseys around the school saying Reagan rather than Pulaski because this is not Pulaski.”
With the sacrifice and hard work the football team has been putting into their first season, there are definitely going to be a couple of things that make this all worth their while, such as the new football uniforms. Mr. Roman said, “It’s going to be neat for the kids to wear their jerseys around the school saying Reagan rather than Pulaski because this is not Pulaski.”
Another benefit of the team's consistent effort is more of a goal that involves the participation of the school. The football team asks that students and staff come to more of the football games. “If we can get the student body invested into coming out to football games, I think it would be a great Friday night experience when we play,” said Mr. Roman. “Because, when you go to a suburban school on a Friday night half the town is there, cheerleaders, band, the whole works. If you go to an MPS game a lot of times you’ll see very few people in the stands. Cheerleading may not even be a part of it. Very few schools have a marching band. We’ve got all of those things plus we got kids here that can sing the national anthem. We are sort of a full-service high school that is very different than a lot of MPS schools. If we can get the kids that go to school here in the stands it’s going to be a different experience than what the other kids in MPS get to experience.”
“If we can get the student body invested into coming out to football games, I think it would be a great Friday night experience when we play,” said Mr. Roman.
Within the past week, Reagan High School has shown it’s growing athletic interest in the formation of its first football team,” said Baude Seitz, one of the team captains, who has been able to share how Reagan’s support first hand has been affecting the team before Friday night’s game. “With upwards of 50 participants on the field already, and more expected to join, it assures returning players on our upcoming performance. Although the team has yet to establish the desired fluidity of a ‘Dog Pack’, it’s clear that all players have grown to be well acquainted.” Seitz adds that their first game of the season will, “prove to be a team-building and challenging opportunity,” which it was.
As Mr. Roman hoped for, their first game truly was an ideal Friday night game. Kicking it off, senior Victor Montenez sang the national anthem, and towards the end of his performance, the football team raised their helmets showing the fans and the opposing team their united front as the ‘Dog Pack’. “We call ourselves the dog pack because huskies are pack animals and you might think, well, pack mentality,” said Mr. Roman. “The pack relies on all the individuals to do their job so that the entire identity can become successful.”
The beginning of the game was quite a struggle as Racine’s football team kicked it to Reagan, but gaining it back which landed them with the first touchdown of the game. However, it wasn’t quite long after that that Reagan was able to keep their ball. In the second quarter, Andres Sabala landed Reagan’s first touchdown. The Reagan fans’ screams were deafening as the scoreboard showed the teams were now tied.
Mr. Roman explained why pushing the football team is not only a betterment to the team, but to the school itself. He said, “I talked [to the football team] the other day and showed them the school crest. There are four parts to the crest. One of them is music/theatre, science, writing/reading and the last one is sports. And that has always been the one, I think, to be the weakest part of the crest. We want to enhance that crest.”
During Friday’s game there were definitely some noteworthy players that made a huge difference not only in the game but for the crest. The team captains of the football team are seniors Baude Seitz, Devin Williams, and Thomas DeJesus. However, senior Caleb Downey also led the team with outstanding plays along with the help of, junior, Drew Dickens. What was truly admirable about some of these players was the willpower to keep playing even after some notable injuries from Caleb Downey, Andres Sabala, to Devin Williams and a few others. Because of the injuries, other team players such as Drew Dickens and Joshua Homesombath stepped up to the plate by leading the team without being told to.
“It’s setting aside your personal egos and personal ambitions for the better of the team,” said Mr. Roman.
“It’s setting aside your personal egos and personal ambitions for the better of the team,” said Mr. Roman. “Obviously all the other coaches on the staff are teachers and so we are teachers first. We really approach coaching like teaching. That’s what it is, but we want to make sure that we are teaching them values that they can take and be part of a bigger thing than just yourself. If we can do those things I think that ultimately we can be successful. The wins and losses can take care of itself.”
After half time the kick off was to Racine, and Reagan was not going down without a fight. Reagan and Racine both had another touchdown in the 3rd quarter having the two in a tie again. Then the fourth quarter started, and that’s when the tables turned for Reagan.
In an enticing battle between Reagan and Racine it was Racine, during the fourth quarter, that took the win for Friday’s game. Racine snuck in another touchdown, having the final score be 20-14. Even though the game was a lose and Mr.Scott, a teacher at Reagan and coach, threw his headset on the ground in fury of being denied a timeout before the clock ran out, Mr. Roman said some reassuring words weeks before the game that stands true as what the team's overall goal of this season should be.
“If we can say at the end of the year that we had a bunch of young men who sacrifice for the greater good, no matter what our win or lose record is, I think then you can judge on whether you’ve had a successful season or not,” said Mr. Roman. “Because football is a grind...physically and mentally. So, I think if we can get kids that can buy into that grind and then, when all is said and done, whether we’ve won more games than we lost, I think that is second to whether we have accomplished that goal or not of building that pack mentality.”