Head coach Chris Arnold praised the team’s efforts to clinch the title. The Ramblers last won a championship game in 2011.
“I am proud of us going out and winning the championship game but I knew these guys had it in them the whole year,” he said. “Tuesday night they went out and played a complete game. That’s all you can ask for. I will truly miss this group of players.”
Arnold noted the highlights of the game as the boys took the sting out of the Hornets.
“Clay Boyd ran the ball very well behind the line which stepped and blocked the proper way,” he said. “He scored two rushing touchdowns and two 2-point conversions. Will Tharpe kicked an extra point. Dayne DiMaria and Garrett Anderson ran the ball and blocked great. We covered great on kickoff coverage, which I like to see. Brent Whitaker blocked a punt, which Brannon Beverly caught and scored. The defense played a very good game. We gave up a trick play in the first and we got scored on by a long pass in the fourth because of a mix up in coverage. Besides that we were solid. Brannon Beverly returned a 70-yard interception and played a complete game. When all three phases compete and produce points, it’s a great team victory all around.”
Arnold and the coaching staff steered the Ramblers through some rough patches this season.
“The way the season has gone I did not know what the outcome would be until the end,” he said. “I felt the momentum move our way in the second quarter, but as you know football is four quarters and Yulee was not going to just lay down, seeing as how they scored 20 unanswered in the second half.”
The coach is proud of how the Ramblers fought against the Hornets and other teams overall.
“It has been a season of highs and lows but I truly enjoyed coaching this group of young men,” Arnold said. “This group responds well and as a coach you appreciate groups like this one because they are coachable. This group stepped up to the challenge with this schedule. Two of the losses came when we had the ball inside the 5-yard line against Charlton going in and against Providence we lost by an inch. Our record could have easily been 5-3 or 6-2.”
He expressed his thanks to everyone who contributed to the team’s success.
“I would like to thank the players most of all for working hard all year and sticking with it and giving 100 percent effort to one common goal,” Arnold said. “I would like to thank the parents and coaches. Without these key parts nothing would have been possible. I would like to thank West Nassau for letting us use the game field. They did not have to do that but Coach Richard Pearce and the staff always looks out for us and whatever we need. They are always there.”