By Rachel Houng and Christina Wilson
For the first time in 22 years, the New Hyde Park varsity football team won against the H. Frank Carey Seahawks with a score of 21-0. Due to this new feat, many Gladiators were absolutely ecstatic and filled with pride for their players.
“I was very happy for our players, students and NHP family. The kids have been working extremely hard, and the victory would not have been possible without the help of our school community,” said Coach Maier.
These players expressed the pressure as the game approached.
“Throughout the week, we were aware of the significance of the game ahead. We knew the history between our schools and that only made us more determined to win. I think it drove us to work harder during practice,” said senior Daniel Kim.
The pressure mounted due to the rivalry between the Gladiators and the Seahawks that emerged after their game in 1999, when New Hyde Park had first lost.
Source from @nhp_athletics
Coach Maier motivates the team; the NHP offense sets up a play.
“When I was young, my dad and my uncles all had their rivalry games with the Seahawks. After winning, I knew that everyone who watched that had doubted us finally realized what we were capable of, and it put the league on their heels,” said senior Eric Orbon.
Even during the game, players were fueled by their desire to win.
“I can barely remember what I was thinking throughout the game, just that I wanted to win,” said senior Aidan Chun.
“Throughout the whole game, I cheered on my team, and every play was nail-biting till the end, but I had faith in my team and I knew we could do it. While I was nervous, I was also confident in my team, and I knew we would be able to get the win,” said junior Anthony Perkins.
They realized that all their hard work paid off and relished in how momentous the occasion was for New Hyde Park.
“After winning, I knew that everyone who watched that had doubted us finally realized what we were capable of...”
“It was an amazing feeling. Not only was it for the first time in 22 years, but the fact that it was on their homecoming too made it even better. You could just imagine how much we wanted to win and how great it felt when we did,” said junior Jarrel Tondreau.
“With tremendous effort, teamwork and desire, the team and program can continue to grow and improve. They can play like a Gladiator today and live like a Gladiator tomorrow,” said Coach Maier.