HERMITAGE, Pa. (WKBN) – There is a new buzz word flying around the Hickory football team this year.
“Sting: Strong, Tough, Intense, Nonstop, Grind,” said senior lineman Dalton Beatty.
“We want to be strong, intense, tough, nonstop grind,” head coach Bill Dungee said. “So that is our focus every day. If they do that, we will be fine, never losing that mentality.”
“Try and emulate all those qualities,” said senior tight end Rocco Iacino. “As you play, as you live, and as a person in general.”
And it is those little qualities that the Hornets are hoping will make a big difference this year.
“The little things are what makes people separate from another,” junior wideout Ramarion Whitehead said. “So the little things mean a lot. When we do the little things, we know we are getting better every day.”
“I tell them every day, physically, I think we are ready,” said Dungee. “They have gotten older, more mature, but it is all about their mentality. If they bring the same mentality that they brought last year, I am very excited to see what we can do last year.”
That mentality helped win Hickory seven games in Dungee’s first season as head coach. For his second year, he brings back the likes of Big 22 alumnus and quarterback Michael Henwood. who has plenty of weapons surrounding him.
“I think we can be really dangerous,” Dungee said. “Like you said, with Michael back, but then our receivers, they kind of know what to expect from each other.”
“We are incredibly dynamic,” said Henwood. “We have so much firepower. Our line is looking good; we have so many weapons. I think we are going to be good this year.”
Something to keep an eye out with this Hickory team this year is the schedule. Three Ohio teams are on the slate: an opening night game in Steubenville against the Big Red and a midseason Region game against Conneaut, before wrapping up the season in Youngstown against Ursuline.
Coach Dungee tells Sports Team 27 that he has spoken to Athletic Director Madeline Hoffman and they are working on contingency plans in case one or all three of those games are canceled.