Despite Challenges, Thacher Football Undefeated

Running Back Lukas Cesena '15 breaks through the Cate defense. Photo Credit: Bynk Chanuntranont
RB Lukas Cesena ’15 breaks through the Cate defense. Cesena finished with 295 rushing yards and 4 touchdowns.  The football team is ranked #2 in the state and is 6 – 0.  Photo Credit: Bynk Chanuntranont ’17

This season, the Thacher Football team has met great success with each game and is currently Thacher’s only undefeated team of the fall season. As of late, the team has been ranked second in California eight man football with a record of 6-0.

With dedicated players and enthusiastic leadership, the team has been able to maintain a strong group dynamic.

Griffin McMahon ’15 said of the team, “We have really been able to come together as a team. Overall, there’s a great sense of camaraderie.”

The team’s biggest challenge this season, as both the coaches and players have pointed out, has been the number of injuries undergone by team members. Currently, with three key starters unable to play, the team has required other players to step into new roles.

Head Coach Jeff Hooper commented, “Our number of players is a bit low to start with and we’ve had a number of injuries as well. We’re hoping to get everyone healthy soon.”

Nate Currie ’15 also noted this aspect of the season.

“It’s been good that we’ve been able to pull together through some adversity. We’ve  had a key player injured in almost every game.”

Despite the challenges, the team took on Cate in a heated battle looking for their sixth consecutive win this past Saturday. The team fought hard throughout the game with a full crowd of supporters cheering them on.

The effort paid off, as Thacher beat Cate for the first time in two years with a final score of 42 – 22.

Coach Hooper said of the win, “We’re excited about the progress this team is making each week. Our games are both fun for us to play and also really important opportunities to improve by a lot over a two and a half hour period. So, the satisfaction of the Cate game was like the others: we experienced adversity, showed resilience, sharpened our abilities, and expanded our capacities as an offense and a defense. We talk a lot about our most important competition being our best selves, and as we embrace that challenge the identity of any particular opponent becomes less important.”

Team Captain Lukas Cesena ‘15 echoed Coach Hooper’s sentiments.

“Playing Cate is always exciting. As always though, what we focus on most as a team is just playing our game, regardless of the opponent. I think that overall we played a great game against Cate and it was nice to get back at them after two years of losses. It’s a game I don’t think I’ll ever forget. But for now, it’s all about moving forward and focusing on who’s next.”

The team looks to extend their winning streak at Lancaster Baptist on the night of Friday, October 17.

Contributions and edits by John Kern ’16

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