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The student news site of Baldwin High School

The Purbalite

The student news site of Baldwin High School

The Purbalite

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Football team looks to turn opening win into successful season

Adam Degenhardt
The Baldwin Fighting Highlanders football team plays in WPIAL 5A section.

Baldwin football players say that new Coach Dana Brown and his staff have instilled a new mentality for this season.

After opening the season with a big win over Brashear last week, the Fighting Highlanders travel to Thomas Jefferson for their second game tonight. Players said they are aware that a similar win over Brashear last year did not lead to a successful season, but they are aiming to make a new name for Baldwin football. 

“We want to surprise the WPIAL with how we can perform and impact the team’s season,” senior Andrew Sharp said.

The Highlanders hope that last Friday’s win will energize their fans.

“I think the energy of being at home was a big factor in the game,” Sharp said. “If we can get fans to travel with us throughout the season, it would be a real game changer.”

The team starts this year with about 10 seniors, some of whom have been playing with Baldwin for a long time. But the team also will rely on younger players, such as Vince Broccoli, Noah Sacani, Nico Micurack, Cenzo Pacella, Aiden Murphy, and Jaden Duttine.

It was a very chippy game last year and we came up short. This year is our year to take it back.”

— Keith Mincin

Senior quarterback John Kozar had to learn a whole new playbook in a matter of months. The coaches helped him through the process by taking their time with him.

“The coaches helped me learn a whole new playbook fast. This was something different, but I feel confident in it,” Kozar said. 

Thomas Jefferson will be a tough opponent in a non-section game, but the Highlanders are looking to avenge last year’s loss.

“I’m excited for TJ. We have a chance at revenge,” Kozar said.

Senior Keith Mincin agreed.

“It was a very chippy game last year and we came up short. This year is our year to take it back,” he said. 

Sharp said the team should be even better than they were in last week’s win.

“We have fixed all of the mistakes from last week, so we should be very prepared for this game,” Sharp said.

The players feel like they can compete for playoffs and hope to go on a deep run this year.

“I hope we can make the playoffs,” Sharp said. “It would lay out a good foundation for what the future of Baldwin football should look like.”

“We want to make a solid playoff run and compete for a WPIAL championship,” Kozar agreed.

Each player also has their own goals for this season.

“My hope is that I can reach 1,000 yards again this season,” Sharp said.

“Some of my personal goals are to lead the team in tackles and make first team all-conference.” Mincin said.

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About the Contributors
Jacob Staley, Sports Editor
Sports Editor Jacob Staley is a fourth-year writer and a senior. He can be found playing or watching basketball or football with his friends, or listening to music.
Adam Degenhardt, Sports Editor
Sports Editor Adam Degenhardt is senior in his second year on the Purbalite staff. When he is not playing sports, he can be found listening to music or hanging out with his friends. 
Zach Wiatrowski, Staff Writer
Junior Zach Wiatrowski is a first-year Staff Writer. He can be found at PPG Paints Arena at a Penguins game, watching Sidney Crosby do his thing 
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