Players' Diary #9: Andrew Weininger

Badger commit Andrew Weininger prepares for the final game on his home field, and a rematch against crosstown rival Rye Saturday afternoon. This column was written for The Journal News, a Gannett newspaper in Westchester County, NY. Weininger has been kind enough to share his columns with Badger Nation.

Now the second season has begun.

Coming into the regular season we knew that we had a very solid football team. But, we also knew that you cannot win the state championship in the first week of the season. Our goal during the regular season was to get better each and every week. If we continued to improve then we would peak at the right time- playoff time.

Playoff games have a different intensity then regular season games do. Once the playoffs begin we are fighting for our football lives. The loser goes home or to a consolation bowl game, while the winner advances one step closer to the ultimate goal.

Being a senior this is my last shot. From now on every time I step on the field it may be the last time that I have the privilage and opportunity to proudly wear my maroon and white uniform.

A lot of my teammates are in the same situation. But, where I am going to have the opportunity to play football in college, many of them will never put on a football uniform again.

Almost all of our senior starters this year played a lot in the 2000 season as sophomores. We were the people who replaced the players who graduated after winning the 1999 state championship. The 2000 season was a very disappointing one, especially by Harrison standards, going 6-3 and losing in the section semifinal to Somers. It is the goal of this class of seniors to come full circle and win it all again this year.

Well here we are. This is our last shot as Harrison Huskies.

Last Saturday we opened up the playoffs with a quarterfinal game against Pearl River. We came firing out of the gates, on our first possession the offense drove down the field behind our big and fast offense line. Ryan Lambiasi, Eric Herron, Matt Monfort and Joe Brefere don't get enough credit for the great job they do opening holes for our backs. The biggest improvement that our line has made is giving Pete Kohlasch time to throw. Pete has taken advantage of it and has added another dimension to our offense.

Our defense played great too. We were able to stop the run and put a lot of pressure on their quarterback. The only negative from Saturday's performance was the amount of stupid penalties we had. We allowed them to keep drives going with penalties. We have to eliminate the penalties, because if we move on, better competition will capitalize on our mistakes.

While we defeated Pearl River last Saturday, Rye beat Nanuet, setting up an unprecedented second Harrison-Rye game of the season. Tomorrow marks the first time that we have met our arch-rivals in the playoffs.

A rematch gives us the unique opportunity to be the only Harrison team to defeat Rye twice in a season. But it is also Rye's chance to avenge its loss to us.

Regardless of the outcome, Saturday will be my final home game at Feeley Field. I am very sentimental about that. I have spent a lot of time on that field with and without pads on, and there is nowhere else I would rather be on a fall Saturday afternoon.

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