S-E still playing with a chip on its shoulder

Sherburne-Earlville has had its share of shutout wins since joining Section III over a decade ago. But 60-0? And on opening day?

With big victories comes big expectations, yet the Marauders retain the chip on their shoulders, said head coach Mike Jasper. Jasper said that Sherburne-Earlville, in his tenure as an assistant coach and now head coach, has not become a “football school” or a “football town.” Surely the Marauders’ faithful appreciate the game, and the mindset of the community’s collective may change with more wins like last week’s over Little Falls.

“We’re located kind of in the middle and not really near any big cities,” Jasper said. “This team has a little bit of an edge. You would have thought we got beat last week if you looked at our last two practices.”

With an attitude in which the players believe they have something to prove every week, it has taken little motivation to prepare for Friday night’s home game against Tully. Tully was a Class C playoff school last season – just like S-E – and actually advanced to the second round of postseason play before losing in the semifinals. It’s a non-division game for the Marauders, but a big step up in competition. “We looked at their offense and realized they have a back who is pretty quick and hard to stop,” Jasper said. “Watching him – and their team on film – has made us realize that each game will get harder for us.”

Tully will look to spread the field with its receivers and attempt to use its athleticism to create mismatches. It’s no secret what the Marauders want to do – smack the opponent in the mouth with dominant play at the line of scrimmage. Be it the offense or the defense, Jasper said he wants to dictate what happens up front. “It’s the physicality between the tackles that we’re hoping for and to put them on their heels,” he said. “We want their offense to adjust to what we’re doing.”

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