Hard work pays off for Burke Eagles on the gridiron

Season in review: 'Each contest we had was key in preparing us for our playoff run'

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  • Burke Catholic's winning football team (Photo provided)

By Josh Lashley

— The success enjoyed this season by Burke Catholic High School's football program shows that hard work, self-confidence, confidence in the coaching staff can wrest victories against even the toughest opponents.

The Eagles posted an overall record of 9-2. They were 3-0 champions in Section 9 Class C Division II. They won the Section 9 Class C championship with a 40-12 win over Chester and advanced to the State Class C semifinal round before losing a hard-fought 28-23 game to Holy Trinity.

“I feel that each contest we had was key in preparing us for our playoff run,” said Burke head coach Aaron Hasbrouck. “Definitely playing New Paltz week one helped us get better because they are a very good team. Also competing against Dobbs Ferry, Woodlands and Chester were huge for us because they are all great programs and were tough opponents.

“Our State Regional game against Alburtus Magnus probably stands out the most because we came out so intense and ready to play they were 9-1 going into that game and we were able to shut them down with our defense and also score 62 points, we were very explosive that night and it was a great team win.”

Leadership wasn’t hard to find on the Eagles’ roster this year.

“Heath Hoovler was the true leader of our offense at quarterback, very unselfish willing to do whatever it took to win games and got everyone lined up and ready to play,” Hasbrouck said. “Mark Pryzbocki was our defensive leader, spent a lot of time watching film and studying the opponent to make sure the defense was prepared and Matthew Guaneri was the leader of our offensive and defensive lines, worked extremely hard put in extra time in practice to be great.”

Coach Hasbrouck also noted how happy he was to see improvements made by student-athletes on the team this past season.

“Michael Elliot and Matt Ehret were two players who showed continual improvement throughout the season,” said the coach. “They were two players we did not know how much we would get from and turned out to be key components of our success.”

Look for more success to be seen on the gridiron for Burke Catholic in 2018 and beyond.

“We are very optimistic about next season returning nine starters on defense and a lot of our skill players,” Hasbrouck said. “We will obviously need to replace a few key players but we feel we have a bright future ahead of us.”

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