'No Looking Back' For OA Football
Tigers hope to continue success of the program
After a memorable 2011 campaign that saw the Tigers take home a Davenport Division title and make a trip to the Super Bowl, the Oliver Ames football program is making sure it won't miss a beat in 2012.
"No Looking Back" was painted across a projector screen at the Oliver Ames auditorium behind head coach Jim Artz as he addressed past, present and future players and parents at the football boosters' Annual Parents Meeting.
The night honored OA's past players but also looked ahead.
"Our goal this year is to not be a one-hit wonder," said 2012 captain Brandon Gagliardi. "We're Davenport Divisinon champs and everyone's going to try to knock us off."
Gagliardi was joined on stage by the other five captains for the upcoming season: Mike McMillan, St. Claire Ryan, Sean Kelly, Sean McCarthy and Danny Louko.
It was a changing of the guard as last year's seniors, who were integral in OA's run, were also present at the meeting. Of the 21 graduating seniors, 11 plan to attend college and play football at the next level. Artz brought those seniors on stage.
Dean Soucie will go to Western New England College; Brian Rezendes will go to Assumption; Jared Schneider will also attend Assumption; Jake McDougall will attend Hamilton; Alex Tepper will attend Trinity; Anthony Reed will attend Mass Maritime; Ryan McGrath will attend Jacksonville; Carlton Williamson will attend Springfield; Brian Crosby will also attend Springfield; Sam Langston will attend Westfield; and Kirk Schuster-Southern will attend Plymouth State.
Artz said the team has been like family, and next year's group will aquire a new identity.
"I watch these kids for four years and every year when they leave it's never the same," he said.
The Tigers will not hesitate to begin the 2012 campaign.
They begin a summer lifting program the day after school ends. Camp begins August 5 and practice starts on August 20.