By Jeremy Caspe, sports editor
This past fall has been a very exciting season for our Nantucket Whalers Football team. Starting off with lots of doubts about the team’s productivity and how the season will turn out, views were definitely changed after the team’s first game against Dennis Yarmouth. Finishing the game with the score of 20-12 led by a big violent defensive front showed the league what type of team Nantucket was going to be.
To follow through the season, the Nantucket Whalers finished with a record of 6-3 and a league record of 3-0. A very important game to recognize, as the season came to a close and the team reflected on their successes and losses, was the game against Sandwich which was brought to a third overtime. The win from that game also put the team in first place, making them the league champions. The game started out looking incredibly dismal for Nantucket players, but once the second half started, it almost looked, to viewers, like there was a brand new team on the field. The final score after the three extra overs was 34-26. One of the most impressive finishes we have seen in a very long time for this team, and one of the most prominent games of the season.
The Whalers ended up making it to the playoffs, but fell short in the first round against Cohasset. Despite the disappointing loss at the end of the season, the team did finish
off the season with the Island cup, leaving a positive mark on the upcoming classes. The team will be losing 13 seniors, and while it will be difficult to part with the senior players, it also opens up many opportunities. With the amount of seniors leaving, there will be lots of opportunity for younger players to make a mark on the program.
Junior strong tackle Sawyer Corby said that “even though we are losing a lot of big time players, if we put in the work this off season, we should be fine. There are also some younger kids that will be coming up that have some serious potential. I think that the weight room will be a very large need for the team, and if we can stay on track we should be all set.”
The team’s final game of the season against Cardinal Spellman was a conciliation game, but still had a lot of meaning for the leaving seniors to have one last shot on the field. The team ended up winning the game, 24-14. There was a lot of doubt about if they should play the game, because of the different divisions. At the end of the day, the choice that was made had a positive effect on the team. Noting important parts of the season after it has come to an end is key; one of the noteworthy things from this season was the amount of hurdles the team had to pass by in order to continue, and was successful despite them all. This season, Coach Tim Psaradelis, the offensive coordinator, head Coach Joe Perry, and defensive coordinator Mark Willett once again led the team to victory and got the team as far as they could. As the final games of the season were finished, the MIAA rewarded Senior running back Justin Bloise as MVP of the Cape and Islands League.
With winter approaching, many players on the team are already focusing on next season with a very big desire to get back to the playoffs. There are definitely high expectations for the team next fall, and with the talent that the team has left, they are expecting a very high level of play from each other. The future will be bright and opportunistic for the Nantucket Whalers.