Returning experience fuels the Warriors

By on August 17, 2016
 Warwick’s football team was represented by a Tyler trifecta — (left to right) Borg, Trimarchi, and Gerhart — at the L-L League’s Media Day last Friday. (Photo by Preston Whitcraft)

Warwick’s football team was represented by a Tyler trifecta — (left to right) Borg, Trimarchi, and Gerhart — at the L-L League’s Media Day last Friday. (Photo by Preston Whitcraft)

Tyler Gerhart likes what he sees so far with this year’s Warwick football team.
The Warriors’ senior linebacker, who led the 2015 squad in tackles, is encouraged with the chemistry developing among the players.
“I feel like we’ve pushed each other more than we have,” Gerhart said at the Lancaster-Lebanon League’s Media Day last Friday. “We’ve had some older guys step up and really push each other, we’ve all gotten on each other for slacking, so we’ve really bonded as a team. Many of us have played two or three years together, so we’ve really started to gel and if we can see somebody’s really slacking, we can get on them and push ourselves harder.”
The hope is that this atmosphere will help push the Warriors to their first post-season berth since 2010.
As Warwick head coach Bob Locker noted, they “return a fair amount of people from last year’s team,” which should only help their efforts to improve on their 2-8 record (1-6 Section One).
One of those is senior QB Tyler Trimarchi, who completed 56-of-95 passes a year ago, good for 755 yards, with three picks and eight TD’s.
Asked how he feels better prepared with that experience under his belt, Trimarchi said, “I feel like I have a better understanding of our offense. I feel like our offense this year gives us a lot of options when we get to the line of scrimmage.”
Those options include junior Isaac Rissinger (134 carries, 633 yards, 1 TD) and senior Ryan Deibler (91-435, 4 TD’s), who finished 1-2 in rushing for the Warriors last fall, and a talented corps of receivers including juniors Carter Forney (27-470, 4 TD’s) and Patrick Quinn (13-205, TD), and Gerhart (8-110).
“Last year, we got happy with a few plays and ran those a lot,” Trimarchi said. “I think this year, we’ve done a real good job of (adding) diversity to our offense, and I think that will help us a lot.”
Senior three-year starter Tyler Borg (6-foot-1, 234) will help anchor an offensive line which also brings back the likes of senior Dakota Johnson-Ortiz and juniors Evan Clark and Ross Formica, all of whom started multiple games in 2015.
First-year assistant John Ridinger has been added to the staff to work with the linemen.
“A new coach coming in is a positive,” Borg said. “He’s pointing us in the right direction, just putting us where we need to be.”
Warwick also has a solid number of returning players on the defensive side of the ball, where the Warriors will run a 4-3 front.
“Two-thirds of the way through last year, we pulled the plug on the defense we were running and went to a 4-3,” Locker remarked. “It was noticeable even then it was probably a better idea than what we started out in last year. The kids seem comfortable with the 4-3 this year.”
A year ago, the Warriors’ defense yielded an average of 36 points per game, so they know that’s an area in which they will need to improve.
Warwick also remembers a tough loss to Conestoga Valley in 2015, coming up just short in a down-to-the-wire 34-29 decision in Witmer.
But Trimarchi and Co. are confident in their chances to turn those outcomes around.
“Like coach Locker said, we’re returning a lot of guys that saw significant playing time last year,” Trimarchi said. “We talk about it a lot, that CV game last year … That hurt. That was a tough game to lose. I think this year, we’ve just got to play all four quarters. I think we’re better-conditioned than we were last year and I think team-wise, we’ll be better in the fourth quarter and we’ll just do whatever it takes to get that win.”
If they are successful, it will go a long way toward snapping a five-year playoff drought.
“Every year I’ve been in this program, the number one goal has been to make the playoffs,” Gerhart said. “We’ve all been together for so many years and we’ve said, ‘We’ve beaten these teams, we believe we can go beat these other teams now, and we can get over that hump and make playoffs and change what Warwick football stands for.’”

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