FOOTBALL PREVIEW: MAINE-ENDWELL LOOKS TO SECURE ANOTHER SECTION IV TITLE
By ANTHONY GOSS
Broome County Sports Report
ENDWELL —— Nine weeks through the 2023 season and No. 1 Maine-Endwell (9-0) has passed the test each time it has taken the field. Now entering the tenth week of the season the Spartans have struck a balance that they carry through a week of practice and into game day.
"We have a lot of fun but they know when it's time to work," head coach Matt Gallagher said. "I think that combination has made this year so much fun. When you enjoy something you do it that much better."
This tenth game holds a bit of extra weight with ME looking to clinch its third straight Section IV Class B title. ME hopes to accomplish that feat in its first neutral site game of the season.
But Gallagher expects his experienced squad prepared to handle the moment.
"No moment is going to be too big for them. They're built for times like this," he said. "When you go play on a neutral site it means something."
They will meet No. 3 Owego (5-4) at Dick Hoover Stadium on Saturday. Owego held off No. 2 Windsor 21-20 in the other Class B semifinal last week.
The Spartans beat the River Hawks 69-0 in September.
Gallagher feels that ME will see a different team than they did in that Week 2 contest specifically on the defensive side.
"Overall their defense is different. A lot of people change defenses against us because of what we run," he said. "Based on what they're running now, it's different than what they've run against us the first time around."
But ME believes it has also made its own improvements in the span since these two teams met.
"I think we've gotten better. You can't help but get better when the kids work as hard as they do," Gallagher said. "They love the game of football and that's the key."
Despite the long-term goals the Spartans chase, Gallagher stressed the importance of a strong showing this weekend.
"If we play well, if we execute, we feel we're really hard to beat," Gallagher said. "If we can do that and we can beat a much improved Owego team on Saturday, that's going to set us up for preparing for the following week."
Anything that follows starts with overcoming the River Hawks for the second time this season.
"This game is our most important game because it's our next game," Gallagher said. "Hopefully it goes our way."
PHOTO BY ANTHONY GOSS
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