Four down, three to go.
With the benefit of a bye week to rest up and heal any nagging injuries, the sprint football team sits three wins away from an undefeated season and league championship for the first time since 2006. With three crucial road victories against Mansfield, Princeton and Army, and a home win versus talented league-newcomer Post University under its belt, Cornell (4-0) is gearing up for the home stretch. After last weekend’s bye week, the Red will host three consecutive games at Schoellkopf, starting with Penn (4-0) on Friday, Oct. 22.
“With sprint [football] there are no playoffs, so you know you have to be perfect and win every game,” said senior captain John Mackintosh. “Penn already beat Navy and is undefeated, so we know that we have to approach this game with them like it’s our championship.”
The Red has enjoyed a great deal of success on the season thus far, which it attributes mainly to its cohesiveness and trust in one another.
“The thing that’s made us the most successful is that we’ve been playing as a unit for the first time in awhile,” said senior defensive back/punt returner Pyrs Carvolth. “In the past there’s been a divide between the offense and defense because we’re pitted against one another every day in practice, which kind of permeated the team mentality a bit. This year we’re much more ‘one team’ as opposed to offense and defense.”
“Trust is really important in football,” Mackintosh added. “So many different things can happen throughout the course of a game; all the reps that the seniors have taken throughout years of practice together really come back to benefit us.”
The bye week could not have come at a better time for the Red, which has been plagued by injuries. Many players, including Carvolth, senior captain Clay Hemminger and senior quarterback Elliot Corey, suffered injuries in the team’s most recent win over Army. Additionally, senior captain Josh Minsky tore his ACL during the preseason, but is taking the injury week to week and attempting to play.
Although the Red keeps its focus on the task at hand without looking too much to the road ahead, there is no denying the advantage of having only home games remaining on the schedule.
“Big picture, it definitely makes a difference knowing our tough road games are all out of the way,” Mackintosh said. “We definitely feel more comfortable at home with our fans and everything, and it’s nice knowing that we’ll be able to finish up at home. But right now, the only thing that we’re focused on is Penn.”
Original Author: Ware Cady