The winds of change have blown through the Hoosic Valley football program this off season as a new head coach takes over and the Indians step up in class.
Last season the Valley played in the D classification, and fought their way to a class D Super Bowl appearance. This fall the Indians move up to class C and will compete in the C North with Cambridge-Salem, Granville, Greenwich, Hoosick Falls and Lake George.
Leading the Valley into the 2019 campaign will be first year head coach Eric Baker, a Florida native who brings 15 years of experience in the sport as a player and coach, most recently as Wide Receiver/Defensive Back coach at Watervliet.
The new coach has been quite pleased with what he’s seen in the preseason thus far. “The kids have been very receptive to the new schemes that we’ve been putting into action” said Baker. Those schemes are part of the new identity being put into place on both sides of the ball that Baker describes as, ” A smash mouth spread and a bend but don’t break defense.”
Some key returning players that will put the new concepts into action are QB Ethan Caiazza, TE/DE Joe Leichenauer, C/DT Jake Carrozza, WR/DB Dylan Hart and WR/DB Henry Madigan.
Baker will look for Leichenauer, Carrozza, Hart and the third year quarterback Caiazza to provide leadership for the Indians.
When asked what the Valley must do to be successful this year Baker responded, “Control the three phases of the game and win the turnover battle in every game.”
With a schedule that includes road games with Mechanicville and Hoosick Falls and home matchups against Cambridge-Salem and Greenwich, I asked Coach Baker who he saw as top contenders for conference and sectional championships.
“Being new to the area I’m not familiar with the “dudes”, however Hoosic Valley will make some noise this year.”
With a more demanding schedule, along with a new head coach the football season in Schaghticoke will have a different look this fall. But if the players can shift gears and embrace the change, look for the Indians to become one of the “dudes” on the Class C horizon.