Football finishes another impressive season

Day in and day out, the football team trained for months in advance to prepare for the final showdown of the Perry Pumas and Chandler Wolves, keeping revenge for last year’s state game in their minds and hearts. Yet it was not enough to overthrow the Wolves’ dynasty. The game ended in a 65-28 loss for Perry.

Junior quarterback Chubba Purdy was sacked four times in the first half; the Chandler brick wall continually halted him from gaining yards up the field like he had in previous playoff games. However, throughout the game, Purdy offered the Pumas’ rays of hope, eventually running 81 yards down the sidelines, leading up to a TD pass to senior Colby Dickie. The Wolves, led by Decarlos Brooks, were simply too good. The Pumas struggled to challenge the seemingly superhero team.

Despite the final loss, the 2018 season is proof of the enormous amount of love the student body and faculty is capable of giving, supporting the football team through thick and thin. The squad suffered defeat in the regular season but then as all good teams do, found a way to win and pulled themselves out of the gutter, going 11-3 and making it to the state championship as a sixth seed.

During the season, the team faced mounting oppositions, including losing senior D’Shayne James to an ACL tear at the start of the season. Chubba Purdy revealed that injuries were not the only challenges the team faced during the entire season, “As a team, we had a lot of young guys this year. We’re going to have to focus on working as a team a little bit better and not being so focused on each other, well not being so focused on yourself.”

Looking to the future, the Pumas have work to do if they want to succeed at the highest level of high school football in the state.

Losing key players like Colby Dickie, Travis Calloway, Brayden Rohme, D’Shayne James, Jalen Young, and Clayton Schmitz will undoubtedly hurt the Pumas next season, however current juniors are preparing to fill the roles they will leave. Preston Jones named Peyton Hill, Cole Sabetta, Jackson Ford, Ky Lockhart, Jordin Young, Chubba Purdy, Hunter Scott, Broc Lane, Aaron Henry, and Tracy Franklin as just a few of the players ready to make an impact on next year’s season.

Even as the school has grown and players have gotten better, the goals for the football team have remained the same since the day Perry opened 12 years ago: “play to [their] full potential, become overachievers as individuals, and get better every week,” said Preston Jones.