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The Paw Print

The Paw Print

Football team struggles amid new adversities

Diego Scholze

Bright lights beam down upon the grass, casting a blue haze onto the field. On the sidelines rest exhausted Panthers, worn-out and weary after giving their all to the game. Despite Poly’s best efforts, pure grit and determination sometimes aren’t enough. After four hard-fought victories, the fortune that favored the Panthers through the start of the season has gone dry.

After starting the season with a promising 4-1 record, the Poly football team has seen their success start to dip as the quality of their opponents rises. The team has endured lopsided outcomes, being outscored 124-22 in their previous three games.

“It’s just disappointing,” said sophomore Abraham Shorter. “After all the work we put in over the summer, we were excited when we saw it start to pay off. We were winning, you know, but we’ve worn out as the season’s gone on. I just hope we can turn it around in our last couple of games.”

Some factors, however, have been out of the control of the Panthers. The small size of the team, for example, means some players have to play for both the offense and defense, tiring them out against the bigger teams that can afford to field separate offensive and defensive players with multiple waves of backups. For Poly, some of the boys are constantly on the field, playing every snap, which leads to exhaustion and even injuries, putting further strain on a team that has already been stretched thin.

Although their bodies are under duress, the team’s spirits are still high and optimistic for the rest of the season. With one game remaining, the Panthers hope to charge back into the win column.

As they faced their greatest tests, the Panthers have consistently displayed honorable camaraderie and teamwork on multiple occasions, keeping their composure in the face of adversity.

Star wide receiver sophomore Preston Mathis said, “We just go out there and try and do our best. Ultimately, you can only change how you play, and we’ve been playing our hardest, even if the score doesn’t reflect it. Winning is somewhere in us; we just have to find it.”

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Oliver Marks, Assistant Sports Editor
Grade: 10 Years on Staff: 2 Fun Fact: I love to cook! Favorite Movie: The Banshees of Inisherind
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