FHC Rugby: Another Chance For Success

With plenty of new faces and a strong core of senior players, there is no telling how far Forest Hills Rugby will go this season.

Joe Freihofer, Sports Reporter

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Forest Hills Rugby found itself in an unprecedented situation last season: a chance to make a run in the playoffs. Despite their dreams being cut short after a tough match, the team will look to bounce back stronger than ever in their 2017 campaign with plenty of new faces, a strong and hard hitting senior class, and a common mindset and attitude. For head coach Ken Smith, he’ll be looking to harness that drive and motivation from his senior leaders to carry his side, and propel the team during the dog days of the season.

Senior Harrison Engler

“The boys are looking good for this year,” Smith said. “We’ve got some news guys that are along for the ride, and they seem to be learning and picking up really well. I really want to see our olders guys educating the younger kids and taking time to explain things to them, instead of pointing fingers. We want it more than anything to make it to the playoffs. It’s all up to these guys and how bad they really want it, but we’ve got an outstanding coaching staff that could definitely help them out along the way.”

For seniors Alec Elzinga and Harrison Engler, the boys will be looking to take the younger players under their wing, while also trying to leave a winning tradition and a legacy of hard work and tenacious attitude, as they make their final marks on the program before graduation. It is a bittersweet moment for any program when a team loses seniors who have worked so hard over the years and invested themselves into the program. The boys will be looking to make the most out of their final season. Alec is optimistic about the new kids in the program and knows that the veterans will be leading by example all season long.

“Our returning guys have a fair amount of experience under their belts,” Alec said, “They are all very hard hitting and tough. We’ve seen some good signs from the new kids; they all seem to be pretty aggressive and have been picking up on the sport fast, which is always helpful as a leader.”

Senior Harrison Engler will be a valuable asset to his team this season, and his punishing hitting style and aggressive attitude as a ball carrier will undoubtedly help the team as they make another charge into the playoffs. He is interested to see how his team will come together in the 2017 season when they need it most, especially when it is crunch time.

“I really wanna show a lot of intensity this season and teach these guys how to play as a team,” Harrison said. “We are really going to have to come together this season and evolve as a team to get ready and make improvements on our run from last season.”

For most seniors like Harry and Alec, the pair are just looking to finish out their season on a high note with their friends at their side.

“I can’t wait to see how we do this season,” Harry said. “I’ve got so many of my good friends on the team this year. It’s a great time when we can all come together for a common goal and battle together. That’s what I truly love about the sport of rugby so much.”

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