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1995 Football Team Gives Advice to the 2018 Team

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As the clock reached zero and the sound of “Ridgers” filled the air, it was official; the Owls had won again. The Park Ridge football team secured another win in their Saturday game on November 10th. The Owls went up against the Boonton Bombers and ended with a final score of 48-26. This win was huge for the team as it sent them to the Sectional Finals this Friday night against the Butler Bulldogs.

 

The 2018/2019 football team is only the second team in Park Ridge history to get this far. It has been twenty-two years since the Owls have gone to the Sectional Finals. The last team to do so was the 1995/1996 team, which went on to win the school’s first and only State Title in football.

The 1995 State Sectional Championship.

 

2018 Football Team poses after clinching an appearance in the N1 G1 State Sectional Final

In lieu of this feat, I contacted a relative that was one of the members of the 1995 team, Michael Bouckenooghe, who stated that “there’s a feeling of pride when [he] talk[s] about it” and he “wants [the team] to feel that also.” He and three other members collaborated to give advice to this year’s team. Former Left Tackle, Scott Rosenthal, included advice specific to certain positions. Rosenthal explained, “First off, have fun… there are no do overs here, so take the time to enjoy where you are and how you got there.  Second, play with no regrets. Third and for you lineman… Hold your block, keep your head up and know your surroundings and keep the play going five second longer than you think.”

 

Others, such as Chris DeMauro and John Reiss, gave advice on sportsmanship and determination. Chris DeMauro said, “On game day, whether you win or lose, do it as a team. Failure is only if you become divided”. While John Reiss said, “Never give up. Even if things seem down, there is potential to come back”.

The Owls are undeniably on the road to success with an overall standing of 9-1 and seated second in the Group 1 North 1 Division, with first being held by the Bulldogs. The Sectional Final will be held at Pequannock this Friday, the 16th, at 7pm. Get out and support the team as the make their way to victory!

And as a final word of advice, “Be that team. Be that family. Put it all out there and win! […] Go kick some [expletive]!” (Bouckenooghe ‘95).

 

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1995 Football Team Gives Advice to the 2018 Team