TOWN OF CONKLIN (WBNG) - The Susquehanna Valley Sabers are trying to start 2-0 in 2017 with a victory in 12 Sports' Game of the Week on Friday night against Maine-Endwell.
"We've gotta bring our A-game," said Susquehanna Valley head coach Mike Ford. "And be solid for four quarters against a very good team."
Susquehanna Valley enters week two coming off a big shutout victory over Chenango Valley, and the Sabers say they did it as a team.
"When things started going wrong for us, we all stuck together and stayed positive," said Susquehanna Valley junior tight end/linebacker Daniel Matthews. "We didn't get down on ourselves, and I think that helped us a lot."
"Our attitude," said Susquehanna Valley junior quarterback/linebacker Jarred Freije. "We stayed positive the whole game. Even when things went down on us, we all stuck together, and bonded, and we pushed through the whole game."
"I saw the resiliency when things weren't going right," said Ford. "They didn't turn on each other. They stuck together, which was nice to see."
Offensively, the Sabers used a balance attack to score three times on the ground and twice through the air.
"We had a very strong run game with good blocking, so when we did the play-action pass, it really opened up the pass game," said Freije. "Had those corners biting and it opened up the pass for us."
"Jarred has a good connection with a couple of receivers," said Ford. "We had Dan Wager get 100 yards receiving as well on Saturday, so that was nice to see. Hopefully we have a couple different weapons that he can spread the field with."
Susquehanna Valley will need those playmakers come Friday night against a stingy Spartans defense.
"Against a program like Maine-Endwell, obviously, they have had great success the past few years," said Ford. "You gotta play mistake-free football. You gotta take care of the football. Hopefully you can force a few turnovers. They are a team and a program that makes you pay if you make a mistake, or you get back up with penalties, or loss of yardage."
"Definitely stay positive," said Freije. "We're not always going to get the calls going our way, but when it gets down, we gotta stay together and keep fighting through and bring the fight to them."
"Just keep doing what we are doing," said Matthews. "Work hard the whole game. Stay positive."
With all the talent in Class B, head coach Mike Ford knows every win is precious.
"It would be great to win and be 2-0," said Ford. "I think every week is going to be a very tough challenge, and any win that we get this year is going be hard-fought and well-earned."
The Sabers head to Maine-Endwell High School for 12 Sports' Game of the Week Friday night. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.