Vikings season ended by Eagles on the road
The AHSTW Vikings ran into a buzzsaw Friday night on the road in the Underwood Eagles losing 42-0 effectively ending their season in the 1A Second Round Game.
“This game doesn't define our season,” said Viking Head Coach G.G. Harris. “It hurts right now, and I know it's hard not to focus on this game on the scoreboard, but our season isn't defined by the last game. Unless you win the state championship, you always feel like you left something out there and it's disappointing, but after we walk away from tonight's game, take a step back and reflect on everything this season, there is a lot to be proud of, and I want to focus on that.”
The Vikings battled adversity all throughout the course of their season, but still managed to fight their way through some tough opponents, including going on the road in the 1A First Round Game against Hinton, shutting them out 21-0.
“From week 1 we dealt with season ending injuries that really created some large obstacles for our team, but we battled and had a lot of people step up all season long,” Harris said. “We met each and every challenge in front of us, and we learned what it meant to play for the guy next to you. After losing three straight, we were able to come back and rattle off 3 straight wins, get into the play-offs and get a first round win. We made the jump to 1A and competed against some of the best teams in the state. 3 of our losses are to two teams, both of which are in the Quarterfinals next week (Kuemper in 2A, currently ranked #6 and Underwood in 1A currently ranked #2). A few of the most memorable; Taking the Keumper game into overtime was a fun, and highly competitive atmosphere. First Round game at Hinton, sealing the deal with a Hook n' Ladder touchdown play to go up 21-0.”
Eight seniors won’t return next season, but Harris is grateful for their contributions to the program.
“Their dedication to Viking football is appreciated and your legacy will live on,” Harris added. “Specifically, I am extremely proud of this group's maturation, both as players but also as people. These seniors are not only tough and talented players, but I am even more excited for them to jump into the real world and become tough and talented young people ready to take on the world. Every person on our team brings something and when I look at this senior group, they bring an incredibly unique personality that keeps you on your toes, but are very humble, coachable and learned to be leaders. We thank them for all their efforts and time.”
Despite an earlier exit than they wanted, Harris is excited about the future of Vikings football, hoping to build off what the team did this season.
“AHSTW football is always going to be in a position to compete at a high level, and we are fortunate to have that tradition and pride around our program,” he said. “We are very fortunate we return a lot of guys that took a lot of high level and quality snaps. But, that potential only buys you a chance. It will all depend on what the returning group wants to do with that potential, both individually and collectively.”