Freshman Athletes: Football

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Upon the start of the 2022 school year, new faces were welcomed on the Raptor Football Team. Academic Magnet was granted six new, freshman football players. These players deserve the utmost recognition; they are juggling making new friends in the classroom with being victims to seniority on the field, all while handling the notorious homework incline from eighth grade to freshman year. 

The arrival of these freshmen brought great joy to both the Raptor coaching staff and their fellow players. Magnet has not been known for its football team and it has often been because of the lack of players. In fact, many players throughout the past joined when they were sophomores, juniors, or even seniors. A sufficient number of freshman players allows for more future participation; the six will be the initial recruiters for the football team. They will inspire their peers to join the comradery. They will tell their friends about the fun at practices, the exhilarating bus rides, and last but not least, the thrill of game day. 

Now: let us meet the boys! 

Tyler Perez, WR/CB, #22

At first glance, one can notice that Tyler is a soccer player. His speed and agility as well as his ability to kick the ball (backup kicker) clearly reflect his positional expertise. Tyler noted his quickness, while also observing an area in which he can improve, stating that he is “quick but smaller.” We must all remember that AMHS does not have a JV football team, so Tyler is playing amongst juniors and seniors as a freshman. His statement regarding his size will not be a problem after another growth spurt and some work in the new weight room. Tyler’s positivity is quickly picked up by anyone crossing his presence. When asked what he has enjoyed so far this season, he made sure to note “the bonds [he has] made with others.” With an easygoing personality and a friendly face, his ability to connect with others appears to come easy. Overall, Tyler will be a valuable addition to both the football team in the fall and the soccer team in the spring. 

 

                                                         Aayush Bansod, WR, #82

With a lengthy body and an active strut, Aayush fits perfectly into the football team. From the get-go, Aayush attended the majority of summer workouts, learning the game and getting better each and every time. Coming from a tennis background with plans to play in the spring, his agility is nothing to laugh about. Breaking out of his two-point stance, Aayush’s feet rarely come to a halt. He notes this himself, stating, “I’m good at changing directions,” while adding that “I’m not the best at blocking.” In a similar situation to Tyler, the struggle of being a JV-size athlete and competing on a Varsity team makes strength-related actions comparatively harder. That being said, with time the blocking will come. Through his enthusiasm and gameplay, Aayush’s work ethic is powerfully clear; he notes it himself, stating that he is “looking forward to putting in the hard work and winning games this season!” Overall, with his determination and drive, Aayush is a necessary addition to the football program. 

 

                                                        Teddy Lorusso, WR/CB, #83

Making an impact on a football team is particularly challenging as a freshman. While giving a rest to Ransome Hudson, star wide receiver and cornerback, Teddy managed to catch an interception in Academic Magnet’s first game against Military Magnet. The Birdcage most definitely witnessed number #22 running toward Military Magnet’s offense, probably wondering who is that? Now we know, folks, freshman student-athlete Teddy Lorusso caught that pass (and expect more). Teddy’s athleticism since the early summer practices has not only been noticed by the coaching staff, but was also complimented by our first string quarterback, Tate Brown. With a thin and agile build, Teddy is able to race around the field and catch any pass thrown at him.  Similar to Tyler, he is a graduate of Cario middle school; clearly they breed some dogs. Numerous players have already expressed their excitement in Teddy’s announcement to join the lacrosse team, as they know they will be receiving an all-around athlete. Overall, Teddy is undoubtedly going to become more and more prominent on the field and his athleticism will make him hard to beat throughout the next four years. 

                                                        Campbell Stoklosa, QB/WR, #17

Wearing the number of former stud quarterbacks, William Hyatt and Will Jordan, Campbell has big steps to fill. At his current rate, he will undeniably fill them. After coming to the majority of summer workouts and showing off his high-performance athletic ability, Coach White (head coach and offensive coordinator), made a clear spot for Campbell on his offense. From day one, Campbell was trained as the backup quarterback, ideally planning to be the successor to Tate Brown. If not playing quarterback, you can find Campbell on our starting offense as a wide receiver. The duality of Campbell clearly shows his athleticism; not every day does a freshman start on offense. Similar to Teddy and Tyler, Campbell is also from Cario (once again: Cairo breeds dogs). He looks forward to “playing Bishop England in the last game,” a statement reaffirming his competitiveness. Campbell also plans to play basketball or lacrosse in the fall; AMHS three-sport athletes are truly admirable. Throughout the next four years, Campbell will most definitely fill the role needed on the football field, while acting as a mature and responsible leader. He will be the embodiment of a Raptor. 

                                               

                                                        Finley Dooley, WR/CB, #48

What is your strength in football?  I asked Finley. 

“My strength is that I am determined to be better,” he responded. At first glance, this response may appear out-of-context or bland, but upon further analysis, one can realize that this quote tells us a lot about Finley, himself. He began appearing at practices in mid-August; most people were excited to have another number on the team. Finley clearly established himself as more than another number. With a smaller frame and fast feet, he can dance around the defense all while carrying a great, big smile on his face. It does not end at offense, though. Dooley brings out his grit on defense, always putting his all into tackles. A graduate of Moultrie Middle School, he represents his school well on the football field and potentially on the baseball field in spring, he mentioned. If Finley carries his “determination to be better” throughout all four years of high school, he will not only be successful on the football field, but also in the classroom. 

 

                                                        Carson Clark, OL/DL, #64

After a conversation with him, one might see Carson as a gentle giant. He speaks calmly, treats all with respect, and has never been seen to be negative. Similar to Tyler, Teddy, and Campbell, Carson attended Cario Middle School, so we can only assume that he has “that dog in him.” He does in fact have the dog in him. Once Carson hits the football field he is an asset. To say that I am excited to see his progression over the next four years is an understatement. Carson noted that his strengths in football are “experience and good technique” and that his main weakness is endurance. From a viewer’s perspective, this is the best possible situation. Endurance is one of those things that is “simple, but not easy,” meaning that it isn’t like Carson needs to learn numerous techniques and build experience within the game; he simply has to run a little more in the offseason. Carson’s size fits right into the Magnet offense and one can only imagine his development and power after an offseason full of strength and conditioning. Overall, Carson’s respectful manor and athletic ability will be a unique asset to the football program; it will be represented throughout the halls of AMHS for the next four years. 

 

To all the readers: 

 

These freshman athletes deserve appreciation for their hard work! 

Remember their jersey numbers to cheer them on in the coming games.