Final Score Podcast Oct. 10, 2019

Final Score Podcast Oct. 10, 2019


Greg Swatek: One of the big games of the high school football season will feature the Catoctin cougars who to travel to Walkersville high school to take on the lions. And I here to talk about the game and all things Frederick County football is the head coach of the Walkersville that Joe Polce welcome in coach Joe Polce: Yes, thank you for having me. Absolutely. Greg Swatek: And we didn’t have you on before the season and we wanted to so so glad we’re able to make this work now’s it’s kind of hard to believe the seasons already. We’re past the midway point of the season, right? Joe Polce: Yeah, Time really flies. I mean, feels like just yesterday the season was getting started and how halfway through October, right? Greg Swatek: You guys are four and one right? Joe Polce: Right now. Yes. Four and one. Greg Swatek: How do you think the season is gone? so far? I think this season has been great for us. You know, we had a tough loss. Joe Polce: at Linganore last week, I taught you how to how to ground in that one, we felt like we held our own. They’re definitely a great team. But we also felt like we had some opportunities to make some big plays. And we just didn’t make them so we’ve been working all week. Just trying to get better trying to you know, iron out our identity as a team and just get ready for the stretch run of the season. What do you really like so far? so far? I mean, I love our defense. I think those guys play hard. We’re very fast on that side of the ball. Offensively, you know, we’ve mixed in some play action passes thrown the ball a little bit more this year, and also a little bit more effectively than we had, especially last year. We got three great running backs that we rotate in to side Jones, Martin America and Joe’s way longer. Nick Edwards has done a great job of fullback. Couple other guys. Nate Wolf and Devin Bruner rotating in there. It looks like a typical Walker’s goal team. I mean, you guys went when your best to typically always have three or four really good backs could pass the ball a little Greg Swatek: Play really good defense? I mean, it seems like the DNA of your of your good teams is there with this group. Yeah, I agree. Absolutely. I think we do have the the blueprint or framework to have an outlet to continue to have an outstanding season. Joe Polce: I think we just need a little bit more experience especially big game experience. And last Friday at Lincoln Oreos, a big crowd, great atmosphere. Think we grew up a lot as a team that night. You guys are number one in the to a West region right now. And that’s a region that often produces when you look at the Damascus’s. When you look at the middle towns, when you look at the Oakdale that when you look at you guys back in 2016, it often produces a state champion. Yeah, it’s a tough region. Definitely. You know, the history of the region. It’s been great. I don’t think this year is any different. If you look at a couple of teams do have losses. You know, there’s not not one standout team. So you know, eight of the 11 get into playoffs. And I think, you know, once it’s all said and done, whoever is playing the best at the end is going to win that region. Why do you think the three Greg Swatek: is produced? How many state champions What is it about? Can you explain Well, I Joe Polce: think I think especially from to a you know, you look at Frederick County football, I mean, is outstanding, you know, it’s very well known in the state, you know, if you’re a to a team and you can, you know, survive games against you know, the some of the bigger schools Lincoln or you know, TJ was very strong for a while Tuscarora you know, you get go through games with Oakdale and Middletown and and you know, Urbana you’ll be ready for the playoffs Greg Swatek: right what needs to get a little better what Haven’t you like as much so far this season for our team? Joe Polce: Yeah, I would say some consistency Megan sure that we actually could execute all the time you know, we hurt ourselves against Linda nor was the mental mistakes some some really costly penalties things like that just just executing our our style of football for four quarters. Greg Swatek: How would you describe this group to someone if they showed up at practice one day and said Hey, tell me about your team coach only described this group I mean, Joe Polce: we really like our team I mean all of our coaches we have a great coaching staff You know, they’re hard working I think we’re a pretty tight knit unit. The guys also you know, when we practice it’s fun you know, the guys will will laugh and joke around at the right time and and get down to business when they’re supposed to. So it’s been you know, practice has been fun they go by quick it’s just a great group of guys to work with Greg Swatek: this group has been together for a few years to maybe maybe not like your state championship group that was together for most all of youth football too but but this group has been together for a while it’s right Joe Polce: there is a core group of those kids probably six or eight of them that have played together since they were small. They’ve come up together they’re very close. A lot of have really improved through weight room summer workouts You know, they’re all those guys are really contributing this year. Greg Swatek: Your your quarterback is a junior right quarterback and your struggles a junior right? He played a little bit last year but but this is his first full season of really being varsity starter, Joe Polce: right? Absolutely. He played in three games, actually three big games against Lincoln or LinkedIn or Oakdale and Middletown Greg Swatek: and I really like state caliber teams, right? We Joe Polce: just asked him to kind of manage the game and mostly was handle handing the ball off and that kind of stuff. So this is really his first year of playing the quarterback position full time, throwing the ball doing all this stuff. And uh, he’s played very well. So far early on, had a huge game there week one against Tuscarora was, Greg Swatek: yeah, I was gonna say third, third and long in the second half there. The game games on the line and he dropped back and made it put the ball right on the money. I believe it was to DJ cash for the game winning touchdown. A really impressive throw. for first year starter. Joe Polce: Yeah, absolutely. We started that game really strong and we’re in control. We again we lost her focus has a miscues desk, Russ, very athletic. They came storming back and then, you know, to our guys credit, they had the composure to pull it together, and then make that one last great play at the end. And our defense held them. Greg Swatek: I mean, the thing that struck me about that game was right away, you guys answered the bell, and you want to close game, you pulled out a game that you might not have won the year before when you were a little more inexperienced, right? Joe Polce: We will we absolutely did not win any of those games the year before we were in probably four of them. And we didn’t win any of the force. Greg Swatek: And that was the difference between a playoff spot in Joe Polce: between the seven and three, eight and two year and a four and six year. So yeah, this year getting that big win week one, you know, at Tuscarora when they have, you know, one of the best players, not just in the county, definitely. Stay with Jordan Addison. You know, we were able to contain him. He had two huge plays, but he’s going to have big plays. Yeah, we did, for the most part contain him and our kids was a great win for our program. Greg Swatek: Right now. You mentioned your running backs. Tell us about your side. John’s a three year starter in your program. Joe Polce: Right Josiah? He’s uh, he’s outstanding player. He’s got a great combination of size, speed, strength, agility plays on both sides of the ball, great outside linebacker. He’s having a big year for us. And he’s just he’s just a great guy to coach all around. Greg Swatek: He was a freshman on on your 2016 team which which took the mask us to the wire and the two way West final. Why Why did you keep him on the varsity team as a freshman? Joe Polce: Well, I mean, that year, we had an outstanding team. We were We were very good at a lot of spots. But we weren’t very deep at running back right. So we brought him up and he did it did a great job with special teams and a great job and some second half of some some labcyte of wins that we had. He also got to spend some time around some some super senior guys who who kind of taught him and that Greg Swatek: was part of your thinking right to get them around some really good players. Yeah, Joe Polce: absolutely. kind of taught him how to practice how to be a varsity football player. And uh, you know, he’s done a great job ever since he wasn’t Greg Swatek: running coming into high school like he said he became a running back when when he when he joined your team, Joe Polce: right, right. Yeah, definitely. I’m not I didn’t really get to see him play youth football. He wasn’t he wasn’t in Glade Valley now. He wasn’t in a walker so youth program so we knew he was a running back in it in a skill Yes. The defensive back his first two years of varsity, but we knew he was a skill player right away. I mean, he’s just he’s just an incredible guy to coach Greg Swatek: right. And he’s gotten bigger. It’s it seems like every every time he shows up in practice, he’s a little bit bigger than Joe Polce: he’s got a I mean, he does work hard in the weight room but he’s also very blessed. And yeah, he he is a big dude right put together Greg Swatek: right yeah. You mentioned Nick Edwards here he seems to personify walkers will football player walkers go running back just so he gets those tough yards? Right in the middle of the field? Absolutely. Joe Polce: I mean, we’re big fullback trap team and he runs that play to perfection. He’s he’s he’s very quick and fast. He runs it perfect. He knows exactly how to hit the hole. He’s a tough kid. He’s a great also great middle linebacker. He’s been on varsity for three years and he’s just done a great job for us are just way longer you mentioned to I he’s he’s new to your team this season. Right Joe Swain moved into the area, I would say late in the summer. Just really joined our program in August. He was he was a player on quince orchard junior varsity last year and he his brothers also there at our school as a freshman he’s brought some excitement to our backfield he’s a he’s a super kid hard worker runs the ball great. And you know he gets better each and every time he touches the ball. Greg Swatek: How are you guys up front because all walkers build teams all good walkers. Will teams have a really good offensive line? And a really good defensive line? How are you guys? I feel Joe Polce: like our offensive line is developing. You know it’s led by Alex rice. He’s a two year starter. Hunter parallax also also a two year starter as well as Ben Hartman. Those guys bring back experience from the year before Tommy Jones has jumped in and done well. Mike Emery he’s been in there some he got a little banged up. Dane Wallace was doing a great job at center he got injured and we just recently through Andrew Brooks in there. He’s been great. So I feel like our offensive line is good. Our defensive line is fast. Greg Swatek: Good. Most of those guys do both or do you Joe Polce: know different groups right and we try to keep our offensive line guys off of off of defense. Tommy plays some defense and soda and Andrew Brooks plays defense. Greg Swatek: I can’t overlook your wide receivers too. And Brett Holden Jake has Joe Polce: right those guys have been great. They were stay returning starters from last year explosive playmakers I don’t have their exact stats, but they both have had big big games. Greg Swatek: Jake Of course, as we mentioned, caught the winning touchdown pass game Tuscarora and Brett Brett I think had some big catches for against like in order to Joe Polce: right Brett was had some big catches against Lincoln or also a against against liberty in Seneca Valley. Greg Swatek: Right? And if you look at Walker’s little play, you might notice they have a pretty big and fast tight end to Joe Polce: absolutely we got a sophomore named Jeremiah Frank. Yeah, six three probably about to 10 tight and he’s caught numerous balls this year. He’s done a great job. He was receiver on JV last year and uh you know, we knew we had some senior guys coming back and we wanted him on the field. He jumped in there and done a great job at tight in and he’s he’s a home run hitter there. So you know if the defenses aren’t, you know aware of where he is he’s going to get behind him and make a big play Greg Swatek: right linebackers and secondary Where are you there? I think Joe Polce: I think we’re doing good our secondary again JKS and Brett a halt played your last year Malcolm Coleman in Bryson which are doing a great job at corner like we talked about Josiah and Nick Edwards have our anchor and the linebacker corps along with Nate wolf those guys our defense has been been really good you know, I mean, gave up a couple plays against Lincoln on the first half but we held them three points in the second Greg Swatek: quarter 17 on the road not a bad defensive effort at all so especially with their with you know how big they are and what their running game is going to be absolutely right it we were talking about this just over the last couple weeks and I’ve talked about it with other coaches to it doesn’t seem like there’s a team in Frederick County this year there’s that far in front of the pack it seems like everyone’s good but but but sort of Joe Polce: right there with each other right the last few years there’s been a dominant team going back to Middletown and then walkers Oh darling and or have all taken their turn being that dominant team this year. It’s pretty much up for grabs. I feel like anybody can be anybody on any night, right? It’s just going to depend who’s playing the best down the stretch? Greg Swatek: Does that help you as a coach and give you confidence as a coach, you could preach to your kids like hey, we can win this game. Joe Polce: Yeah, absolutely. And I think the kids you know, they look around and they know I think they really believe that. You know, we could win against anybody on any night as long as we play well and you know, execute our game plan. I believe we could be anybody Greg Swatek: right now. You guys are getting into the real teeth of your schedule here. I mean yet Lincoln or last week, Catoctin? No, Catoctin five. And then you have Fred unimproved Frederick high time, and then you close the season without tail and middle. You guys are right in the teeth. Joe Polce: Tell them the last five games are are no joke. We got to be ready each and every week. We got to improve each and every week because the other teams are working hard to and it’s going to be a battle down the stretch. Greg Swatek: Is there some pressure off your shoulders because like one loss isn’t going to kill you anymore. Two losses isn’t going to kill you anymore in terms of the playoff. Joe Polce: Right. It definitely is, you know, you know, I mean? Probably four were four and one, probably four wins is going to get us into playoff Greg Swatek: because why eight of the 11 to make it right. Joe Polce: There’s a couple of teams with no win. So yeah, I mean, there’s not as much pressure the key thing is now to improve every week. It’s almost now kind of like a basketball situation where you want to improve steadily as the season goes, you want to play your best football. You know, we we expect 910 1112 Greg Swatek: me because Oakdale won nine games, I think I think and we’re on the road against you guys in the playoffs and the first round of the playoffs. I think they were unbeaten last year and didn’t play at home playoff game until the state semi finals. You’ve been on the other side of it. Because when you’re battling with Middletown, in 11, and 12, you had to go on the road and play those games. Right? Yeah, we were up despite your fantastic record, Joe Polce: nine and one and 11 and 12. And played away. We were 10 and oh and 17 and played by the regional championship away, right? We’re 11. And Greg Swatek: that just shows you how good this this region is banner, you can win just about all of your you win all your games like Okay, last year, like you guys did, and not even have a home playoff game. Right? So but but it seems like that pressure is gone away. Like even if you have a couple of bad nights. It’s not it’s not gonna Joe Polce: it’s not the end of the world. Now. I mean, right now, you just have to, you know, have that mentality is, you know, we got to get if you lose a game, forget about it, you know, get ready for the next week. As long as you’re getting hot at the right time you got a shot. Greg Swatek: Do you do you like that? Or do you sort of like the edge like one last can really hurt us? Joe Polce: Well, I think it’s a balance of both. I think this system is pretty new. And I think we’ll see, you know, over the over the next couple years how it plays out Greg Swatek: at the same time, you don’t want a bunch of like, mediocre, right, eight, Joe Polce: right? It seems like it’s times four wasn’t enough. But eight out of 11 is a lot. Right. So I don’t know if there’s a balance in there. Greg Swatek: Like a forensics team or whatever. Like you could Oh, in the playoffs? Joe Polce: Absolutely. I mean, last year, we were four and six. And if you look at how the the standings broke now we would have been seventh, right, so we wouldn’t even we would have made it as a seven seed. Greg Swatek: Right? The seating even matter if you get receded after the first round, I guess, first two rounds, the first two rounds, I guess it does, because you want you want the best possible path for those first two games, Joe Polce: right? I mean, if you if you can get one or two, you know you’re going to be home. And you’re also not going to have to say your Sayers to and the reason you won’t have to play the number one seed until down the road, because after the second round, they redo it right. Greg Swatek: Okay. Yeah. So So seating is important. And you guys emphasize that with your kids. Absolutely. Yeah. So I could talk to this week. I mean, it’s a game that you haven’t played I don’t think for the last two seasons. I mean, you guys played every year until the last couple of seasons when the schedules got was a weird not playing them. There was Joe Polce: it was a we’re not playing a talk. I mean, we kind of looked at the history. walkers will take a talking for 40 consecutive years. And now the last two we didn’t play. So we’re looking forward to that to the matchup. They’re very good team we’ve been studying, you know, all week in film. I mean, they’re, they’re explosive. They got a great running back, quarterbacks very good to, you know, two outstanding receivers and a couple other guys that are still solid receiver. So you know, they bring a balanced attack and in a fast aggressive defense, it’s going to be a tough game for us on Friday night. Greg Swatek: What do you think makes the rivalry sort of a special thing for the kids? I think Joe Polce: its proximity I mean, we’re not very far from each other you know, similar communities and kids know each other played each other in youth football all the years. So you know, just just that those factors make it an exciting robbery for high school Greg Swatek: right? What do you what do you most What are you most worried about? When you look at Catoctin i think Joe Polce: i think we’re worried about obviously you know, they’re fast and aggressive on defense they have a good offensive line and again, you know, their quarterbacks good their running backs good their fullback runs trap well he blocks well, and they’ve got some outstanding guys on the perimeter so worried about all that Greg Swatek: right. What are the keys for your guys to win this game are mean for us? Joe Polce: We I play great assignment football. You know, we can’t have done penalties and when we have their opportunities to make big plays we got to make them Greg Swatek: right. Do Do you scoreboard watch I mean when you look at other games around the region and say this team did that I mean, how closely or do you follow that? Or how how locked in or how locked in are you into just to what you guys are doing we do we locked in Joe Polce: on what we’re doing now we go back? Nick coaches always after the game, some of the guys have it on their phone. So let me know who wins or loses. That’s not something that we we study or we really dwell on too much. But it’s always fun to sit back in the office after the games and you know, talk about who won who lost that night, Greg Swatek: but But again, it’s not as important because before you guys were crunching points and bonus points and all that stuff. Right and it matters I guess in terms of seating again but but it’s really not right it was Joe Polce: we were definitely crushing them in you know, especially like to sell 2017 us in Damascus. It came down to a couple percentage points of that game being at Walker’s were over there. Greg Swatek: Right. Yeah, exactly. So I mean, is it fun? It’s got to be a lot of fun to play these big games. Joe Polce: Oh, yeah. That’s what I you know, we tell our kids this is, you know, this is why you lift weights. This is why you practice hard. This is why you should play football, nobody plays. You know, this is why we coach, nobody plays for easy wins. That’s, you know, for us. That’s just, it’s not that exciting with these guys. And you got to play against a really good team. well coached team and in front of a big crowd. That’s what it’s all about. Greg Swatek: Right? What do you enjoy the most about the job? I mean, your kids have left high school. I mean, you don’t have to be doing it anymore. But but but you still do just what do you enjoy the most about what you do? Joe Polce: I mean, I enjoy First of all, I love the game of football and I enjoy teaching that to our kids. I enjoy the camaraderie with the players and being around a player that’s still you know, really love those guys and and that especially that you know, 11th 10th 11th and 12th grade age, joy that I love the camaraderie with our coaches, we have unbelievable coaching staff. And you know, it’s for me and I want to coach as long as it’s fun right now. It’s still a lot of fun. Greg Swatek: You’re stepping down anytime soon do yeah, Joe Polce: I don’t I mean, like I said, as long as I’m having fun, it’s enjoyable what I want to do it Greg Swatek: was this always sort of your dream job? Did you see yourself sort of in this job? wait long before even got it? Like when you you’re a band and you’re some other place? Was your plan always to get to Walker’s? Joe Polce: I don’t know if it was a plan. I mean, it was definitely it’s definitely my homeschool and my community. So when the opportunity presented itself, I definitely took it in his bows, the best thing that ever happened to me and my family, Greg Swatek: right, you got a chance to coach your kids, right Joe Polce: coach my kids, we you know, at the school with them and their friends. And it was it is still is a great experience, you know, just being a part of the community that I grew up in, Greg Swatek: right what was the experience level and in high school football is a cyclical thing. I mean, you can go through some down years, if you have a lot of experience. I just just where you guys Joe Polce: feel like we have. We have a lot of guys that started last year back. I think what we saw they have experienced but what we’re lacking is that big game experience. I think we got a lot of that feel last week against Lincoln or even though you know, they beat us hard fought game. I felt like we grew up against them that I grew up. So each time we play in one of those atmospheres, I think we’re going to get better and better. Greg Swatek: Right? Everyone’s sort of bummed out about the the TJ football situation it’s kind of sad to see a proud program like that going through going through a tough time just just how do you sort of look at that situation? And I mean, you guys lost a game I mean, 98 game just use what are your thoughts? Joe Polce: First of all, we feel terrible for the TJ community their coaches they’ve got great you know, Bobby Humphries is a great guy. It’s tough for for their community, their school their players. We wish them the best of luck, and hopefully they can get that thing rolling again next year. And you know, it’s tough when everybody is tough, you know, for our kids lose a game. I mean, even though it’s a way tougher on them. It’s bad. No, no, we know what you’re saying is bad for it’s bad for everybody so Greg Swatek: right because because football is such a light is like a lot of people said it’s such a community event and when you don’t have those games, it’s really really you’re affecting far more than just what happens on railed, Joe Polce: you know, a great football season can really bring a community together. So yeah, they’re missing out on that. And we know we wish them nothing but the best of luck and hopefully they can get that rolling again next year. Greg Swatek: And in previous conversations with with with you You said you’re like we’ll see on the nine game schedule. You feel pretty good about it so far, or Joe Polce: Yeah, I think the I think the the book is still out. Yeah, you know, especially now, you know, if you lose a game now you’re down to eight. I mean, those guys, you know, you put a lot of work in into, you know, the weight room and all that kind of stuff throughout the year seven on seven summer workouts, you know, now, you know, you only get a regular season really shortens the season shortens it up, yes. runs in a bunt. So, you know, hopefully we can get a good couple of playoff games in and in, you know, kind of stretch it out. So the kids get more games, but it’s going to be interesting to see how it plays out. In a couple times. There’s been some some pretty big blowouts one versus fours now you’re gonna get one versus eight. Right? So I think that’s gonna be interesting, right? Greg Swatek: It always seems from our perspective, the season moves really, really fast. I mean, it’s week six already I’m here we are in cover. Does it feel that way for you? Or, like being in the day to day side of it? Does it go move a little slow? It’s a little bit of both. I think Joe Polce: when you look back like a we played Tuscarora, I mean, that was a long time ago, like the seasons of the weeks roll. But when you’re when you’re in the day to day, you know, kind of kind of, you know, school practice, you know, preparation, all that kind of stuff, you know, kind of it might slow down a little bit, Greg Swatek: right? Is every day really different? Or is that you try and keep every day. We try Joe Polce: to keep every day the same. I mean, each You know, every every Monday for us is basically the same every Tuesdays the same every Wednesdays the same every Thursdays the same, because I really feel like you know it football teams do better and routine. Now, you know, this week was different because there was no school, you know, on a Wednesday to our early on a Tuesday. So it’s been a little different. But I like to keep our players and as much routine as possible. Right? Greg Swatek: Do you worry about that heading into a big game like that? Worry about a little bit. Yeah. Because the routines disrupted right, Joe Polce: it is disrupted. So I’m glad that we’re getting back to school tomorrow. You know, tomorrow’s practice will be just like last Thursday’s practice. And that’ll be good for you back to back to your normal week back. So I know learning tomorrow. Last week, you had a big game, but it was at legging or this week’s game is that is that Oh, yeah. what’s what’s the buzz like in the community? This is our homecoming. So there’s a lot of excitement for that. You know, there’s a great you know, one great thing about Walker so it’s you know, it’s a it’s an actual town with one high school and so, you know, they do a lot of neat things. There’ll be a parade, you know, the far right, yeah, you’ll prayed every, every time for homecoming. will have fireworks at our game, you know, the fire trucks will be there. So it’s a it’ll be very exciting. But you’re black on black uniforms, which we do for every homecoming. So Greg Swatek: what why why, like, why the black? Joe Polce: I mean, we came up with that a couple years ago, and the kids really like it. It’s just all you know, we guys, we took it off from the colleges are on the uniform game. So ladies, did you Greg Swatek: have any uniform when you were playing your walk? Did you even have a choice? For another uniform? No, there was no choice now. Joe Polce: I mean, I was talking to with that to another coach. It’s almost like, you know, we have all these new uniform combinations now and different things. It’s it helps build your program. You know, kids nowadays, like that kind of stuff. And it draws interest to your program. And you know, our numbers are better now than they’ve ever been. But you Greg Swatek: have to budget for that stuff, too. Right? You have to buy all those, Joe Polce: you got a budget for it, and it helps over, you know, to be at the same place now for you know, 10 years as the head coach, it helps, you know, budget money over those years. And we have some great fundraisers and Greg Swatek: do a golf tournament. Right. Joe Polce: We do a really successful golf tournament in June and then we do we sell the fundraiser cards, and we do really well with that. Greg Swatek: Yeah, cool. Well, we look forward to this game. It should be should be competitive and should be very good. So yeah, absolutely. Joe, we appreciate you coming in and best of luck the rest of the way here. Oh, thank you Joe Polce: very much. And thank you for having me. Greg Swatek: When we come back here on the final score podcast, we will swing around the county sports scene with FMP sports writer Joe Ferraro, stay with us. Back here on the final score podcast and joining me in studio is FMP sports writer Joe Ferraro. And now Joe Are we just talking with coach Joe Paulison here on the podcast and it’s hard to believe the season is already past the midway point out here. We’re getting ready for week six all all of a sudden. Joe Feraro: Yeah, I don’t know. There’s just a lot of good a lot of good weather. You know, thankfully it’s made it go by really fast. That’s That’s for sure. But no, you got a little cool Christmas in the air. But yeah, we’ll see how things go. A lot of big games coming up this week. Greg Swatek: Yeah, no, no doubt him before I asked you about the walkers Ville Catoctin game. I wanted to swing a little bit around the football scene with you. And last week you saw Urbana beat Tuscarora what were your impressions of each of those teams? Joe Feraro: Yeah, Urbana, boy. You know very it’s been a while since since I’d seen Eric Cohler play but boy he can he can beat you in several different ways you know catching the ball running the ball is even even when they when they go empty backfield. He does an admirable job blocking there so he’s he’s quite the quite the versatile weapon and just that it’s that running attack with you know, with the counters they run with not just Eric Cohler, but guys like like Mikey Gonzalez, they’re they’re really effective. running those plays. I mean, they run them over and over again, then everybody knows it’s coming. But when you have the line playing as well as it’s playing, you know, they it doesn’t matter of execution. If it’s there, they’re going to succeed. Tuscarora offensively also also very, very impressive. Jordan Addison is Jordan Addison saw him play quite quite a bit last year as well running out of the Wildcats sets as usual versatile self but also the same Pacheco quarterbacking gives them another another multi time threat athletes so so to two explosive offenses a lot of fun to watch Greg Swatek: with with color. he’s a he’s a division one lacrosse recruit easy. You got good lacrosse, but how do you think this football season is sort of factoring into his decision for college? Joe Polce: You know, I actually Joe Feraro: asked him about that. And he said, You know what, I’m going to keep going to keep all options open, you know, football and lacrosse. I mean, if I were to take a guess, I think I think he’s he’ll he’ll probably go the lacrosse route. But it ceilings Greg Swatek: a little higher there. Right. Right. Joe Feraro: Yeah. I mean, he’s just the total package there, you know, offensively defensively, so so he’s got a lot a lot of skills on a very good good boys lacrosse team. So, so so so yeah, I mean, if I were to guess he would go with lacrosse, but boy, he couldn’t he’s a heck of a football player to Greg Swatek: Brad Wilson. He credited the lacrosse team at Urbana for sort of changing the culture of the football program right Urbana had been really struggling but now a lot of the lacrosse players who know how to win who play at a very high level they’ve they’ve come over and really infuse a lot of that belief into the football program and I for one put a lot of stock in that and it seems to be rubbing off on the football team though the success of the boys lacrosse program Joe Feraro: Yeah, I think so. I think so you know the you know the winning culture. It definitely carries over you know that that’s for sure just instill you know, the you know, the right habits. Confidence so all those intangibles very important. I fully agree. Right? Greg Swatek: You seem Walkersville. This is mobile. What were your impressions of walkers Phil? Joe Feraro: I just the the amount of the many options they have at running back. I mean, jeez, nobody, you know, they don’t they never have to worry about about fatigue. You guys got guys like Josiah Jones and Nick Edwards who are who are in that backfield, but they play on both sides of the ball. And so when you got guys like Joseph a lot longer and then mark America coming in and spelling those guys that I mentioned that running back and just that depth, I mean, whoever they put back there, you know, does the job and you know, I think that you know that offensive line that was a part of those those championship teams of the past it’s it’s really coming coming together and and allowing for them to do that to have that that success on the ground. Greg Swatek: A couple of nice receivers to and Jay cast and Brett a halt to Yeah, so so they’re capable making. They’re not a passing team or a passing offense per se but it’s not like they’re capable of making the pass when when when when they have to make it with with stroke and those receivers. Joe Feraro: Yeah, yeah. And, and, you know, it’s not going to be, you know, get the ball down the field, but those nice safe intermediate routes there. Those guys are very dependable, you know, those 10 to 15 yard, you know, posts and, and hooks and slants. I mean, they they’re really efficient with that passing and Greg Swatek: it seems like a team like attacking their walkers bills gonna face a team that’s a lot like them. I mean, that’s predicated an offense. It’s predicated on running the ball. They have passing ability wide, Joel’s got confused me to talk. He’s got some really nice receivers too. And Travis fields, Mason Clark is is coming back into the mix. Yeah, like Eli fry. And then but it all starts with the running game with Carson Zakarian and Jake Baker. So both teams are good along the line. So it seems like you have two teams here. There’s sort of a mirror images of each other and a lot of ways, Joe Feraro: you know, offensively that you know, definitely now, you know, from what, and I did see Catoctin play last year, it seems like it’s you know, same old explosive offense. I think a big test is you know, how well how well is Catoctin defense going to play you know, it’s going to be the big factor, Neil with Walker’s will and the offense they have it may be the best test that you know that that defense has has had this year and defensively for walkers Ville. In the past, you know, you had your notes two or three, you know, superstars that made all the plays. Now, you can say that, you know, the they have six seven guys, you know, go you know, you know pursuing and swarming to the football it’s it’s going to be a, you know, tough defense to crack. I mean, Lincoln only scored 17 points against them. So so we’ll, we’ll see how Catoctin can do against that Walker’s will defense. Greg Swatek: It should be a fascinating matchup and Catoctin of course has Jacob McElwain on their defensive line, which should help them against that Walker’s a running game. So yeah, I think it’ll be a very competitive game that could go either way. Yep. So you and I were talking in the office just a night or so ago. The all area senior running back is going to be pretty crowded. When when you consider you have Xander Maclaurin, who’s off to a great start. You have Carson’s to carry who basically has 1000 All Purpose yards. And and Eric Cohler and 17 touchdowns, just passed, basically at the halfway point of the season. And then you have Eric Cohler, who’s lighting it up for Bana. I mean, those three and then you have some other decent backs elsewhere in the county, too. So running running back seems to be the deepest position across the board in the county so far. Joe Feraro: Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. You know, you know, you’re, you know, receivers you know, ton of, you know, decent you know, receivers Yeah, but it’s it seems to be the year of the running back. Yeah, Greg Swatek: yes, here I think you have one really really good receiver in Jordan Addison and some some good ones behind them. And but running back it seems like you could go any number of ways when you win when you ask who’s who’s the best running back in the county? Joe Feraro: Yeah, and you know, Walker still has several capable ones I mean, if if if they had to lean on one you know, you know, one of those four that they give the ball to could could put up be in the same same kind of numbers. You know, Josh Pratt over at Brunswick has had a pretty good year as well even at Frederick christmas tv I saw him had a have a really good game earlier this year so so yeah, a lot a lot of good running backs definitely in the county Greg Swatek: league in our so far has real three really good wins. They have wins over Middletown Oakdale now and walkers will have an interesting game this week against the New Jersey State Champion. Penn pens Grove, a very highly regarded team. They’re a smaller school though, so so I’m not sure what sort of level of competition they typically face, but they could give like an unreal battle. I’m interested to see that game too. Of course you have the Middletown Oakdale game. Yeah, that seemingly could go either way and should be fairly competitive. So it feels like we’re really getting into the teeth of the football season here. And certainly, you have some really important games this week with games that you’re not sure about the outcome because it doesn’t seem like unlike previous seasons here in Frederick, like we we don’t have a team that’s that far ahead of the pack, it seems Joe Feraro: no No, no, a lot a lot of toss up games. Yeah, I mean, you top four or five teams if you if you have them, you know face each other you know, you can say yeah, depends on that and that night You know, one team will have a you know, committed a costly turnover to and that’s the difference in the game. But that doesn’t mean that team loss This is that much far beneath the the team that one Greg Swatek: you have to say like, nor is a little bit out in front of the pack just because of the nature of their wins and who they’ve played so far. So upcoming games with her band, I’m interested to see Urbana, take them on and see if they could challenge the login or pass the fence a little bit and then look at Arsenal as a game to play against Tuscarora coming up too late. And that should be interesting. So you have a lot a lot of good games still still play this season. And in pretty interesting though. And I was talking about this with Coach polls to there’s not as much pressure win them be just because most teams, most teams are going to make the playoffs like one one loss isn’t going to wreck your season like like it has for teams in the past one or two losses. Joe Feraro: Yeah. Yeah. And, and also, you know, you could say that, you know, all these teams after actually talked to a couple of athletes this year, who have said, you know, everybody in the county lost a lot. So, you know, there’s no pressure on on one team that has, you know, nine key returning starters in there, you know, expected to, you know, to win, as you know, maybe you know, some of those stronger Lincoln or walkers, Ville teams in the past where, you know, you knew they were going to go deep now, you got a, you know, a bunch of a bunch of teams that have a lot of new blood and so, you know, they’re, you know, the pressure is not as much definitely Greg Swatek: right MMOs Yeah, far they going to playoffs Damascus moved to three. So, so yeah, that’s a team that would have to contend with. Obviously, as they move through the state playoffs. It’ll depend on the round though, because if he get through their first two rounds, they’ll be they’ll be receded. So. Yeah. So that’s an interesting twist with the playoffs. On the girls soccer team looks like our band is the team to beat that a good win over Middletown last week. I think middle towns right there with him. It was a one nothing game. So Middletown and Urbana seemed to be the team to beat on the girls side, followed by Middletown and then behind them you probably have teams like TJ and walkers will and even maybe Tuscarora field field hockey. Oakdale seems to be really strong this season. They’ve already clinched a spot in the CMC championship game of volleyball Urbana, is it going to make a run in the state title? It seems that they’re very strong and bringing bring most of their team back from it from a squad that recent state final last year. And then we come to your area of expertise, which is boys soccer and I guess Oakdale, what’s the name of the beating CMC? I think Joe Feraro: so. And you mentioned volleyball. Boy, I’ve seen a couple of those teams play so so you know, Oakdale and Tuscarora also, you know, very, very good teams it just depends on you know, who shows up to play so so you’re gonna have you’re gonna have her band and for a you’re going to have Tuscarora and three and Oakdale into a Greg Swatek: field hockey to that there are battle Joe Feraro: field hockey as well. Yep, yep. So So yeah, those those three teams boy I mean, I could see any of those those three and volleyball going you know, going very far and then as you said that you know, the boys soccer yeah Oakdale with with the weapons they have on offense, Riley dagger, Griffin vinyl, among others. And then their usual strong defense. Yeah, I think they’re there, you know, by far the, you know, the class of the county, but you know, Middletown and, and walkers. Ville actually, you know, played Oakdale to two times this year or so. So they’re, you know, they’re also in the mix along with TJ TJ played Oakdale tough, I believe was a three two games so so but you know, Oakdale with the number of returning players the experience, the usual strong defense, I think is, you know, a little bit ahead of everybody else. Greg Swatek: Who are they likely to play in the CMC championship game? Joe Feraro: Well, that’s going to be actually a big match tomorrow, Tuscarora and TJR are going to be playing each other and that and that game may may very well decide who who comes out of the the spires division so we had Tuscarora past couple of years they’ve been you know, right around 500. But now they’ve started to make some some strides in Come on strong so that game tomorrow may may very well go along the way will go a long way as far as who Oakdale place Greg Swatek: maybe it’s just been but it seems like there’s been an abundance of ties in soccer. Joe Feraro: I’ve covered two of them this year. I think i’d i’d cover just one in my previous five years. Greg Swatek: Yeah, I mean, I you know scoreless time yet it was a scoreless time one of your games or you know, I Joe Feraro: I can’t remember. I can’t remember. I know, let’s say I know it had a one one tie. I can’t remember the other one. It may have been a scoreless time. No, I think it was 211 ties. Actually, Greg Swatek: why I know I’ve covered a scoreless tie this year. And there there have been a couple others that have been close to that. So I don’t know if it’s just the defenses are really strong this year and tough to crack if if we’re missing a bit of a scoring touch this year or the the teams are just that evenly matched. It’s hard to explain but it seems like ties are Mmm, maybe it’s just me and maybe maybe it’s it’s just another normal year, but it seemed like ties are on the increase this year for soccer. Joe Feraro: Good. It could be a combination of the two. In terms of you know, prolific scores. You have a few but maybe it’s not as many and as many as we’ve had in the in the past. But yeah, that finishing touches definitely a big part of it, too. I’ve covered a lot of a lot, a lot of Miss scoring opportunities just can’t get in the back of their Greg Swatek: mind. So here we are. It’s already October 10. Just about nine Yep. 10th. And the playoffs are less than a month away. Right. And we’ll be talking about playoff season and who’s a contender to win a state title pretty soon too. So looking forward to looking forward to Yeah, Joe. As always, thanks for coming in. And my thanks to Graham Cullen for producing and all of you for for tuning in every weekend. I’m Greg Swatek, and I will see you back here next week with another episode

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