SOMERS, N.Y. – Dom Manno was out on the brand-new artificial turf field at Kennedy Catholic Wednesday getting ready for another day of summer practice and a new beginning for the Gaels football team.
“This field means we’re starting over with a better facility, preparing for a new football season,” said Manno, a senior leader who has been waiting nearly three years for the all-purpose complex to be finished. “It’s not so much the surface you play on. It’s about attitude and focus – new team, new start.”
Coming off a 2-6 season in Section 1 Class B play, the Gaels have a strong group of seniors and a new attitude.
“These kids been waiting for this new field since some of them were freshmen, so as coaches we like it but the kids are really motivated,” said Kennedy coach Rob Schwartz, who is a New Rochelle resident. “Our numbers are lower than the last couple of years, but they work really hard and hopefully the character and commitment they have shown will pay off in wins this year.”
The seniors see the new field as a new stage for their final performance and hope to pass the baton to the next generations of players.
“As a senior I want the younger players to know that it takes hard work and dedication to play at Kennedy Catholic,” Manno said. “And you won’t play if you don’t do the work.”
Junior Taylor Mulhern said moving from the old spotty, rough grass field was inspiring.
“It’s awesome,” Mulhern said looking at his new turf. “The other field was really crappy. Look at this, it makes you want to come out and work. The coaches have been great in getting us to do what we have to do and everything has been going well.”
Kennedy opens its season at Croton-Harmon, last year’s Section 1 Class B champion, Saturday, Sept. 10 at 1:30 p.m.
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