The hours of hard work that started back on August 6 come to a head this Friday evening as Coach Mike Dunlap's Emmetsburg E-Hawks open their 2012 football campaign. Awaiting the E-Hawks for the season opener are arch-rivals, the Tigers of Spencer.
Friday's game will be the first of the season for both squads and like any season opener, there are questions to be answered for the coaches, and for the players themselves.
While the E-Hawks showed some good things in their pre-season scrimmage last Friday night, the true test comes at 7:30 Friday night at Dale Norton Field.
Taking on the Tigers is no easy task.
"Spencer is a quality football team, no question," noted Dunlap. "They have great speed and great size overall."
Offensively, Spencer returns with the same look as last year.
"They are a mid-line veer offense and they use lots of doubles and triples in their alignment,"?Dunlap said.
There are also concerns on the defense used by Spencer.
"This year they work out of the 6/2 alignment, and we know they will blitz a lot," Dunlap added "They are a very disciplined football team on defense."?
For the E-Hawks' first effort on the gridiron, the mantra will be basic.
"We will have to be very disciplined on both our offense and defense,"?noted Dunlap. "Play with discipline."
Assignment football and playing solid, fundamental football will also be important for the E-Hawk players as they open the 2012 season.
Through this week of practice, its the execution and assignments that have been the emphasis of the E-Hawks' efforts to prepare for the Tigers come Friday night.
"We are really emphasizing the need for our players to play assignment football, to be physical on every play and always run to the ball," Dunlap added.
Friday's game starts at 7:30 p.m. at Spencer's newly renovated Dale Norton Field.