NEWCASTLE — As his team implemented new offensive and defensive schemes through the offseason, Newcastle coach Keith Bolles emphasized one simple goal for his players.
“The motto has been to get better each week,” said Bolles, whose Racers improved to 4-2 with a 28-14 win over Heritage Hall last week. “It started in the summer, with our workouts and seven-on-seven, and it just carried over into the season. The kids have been in a great frame of mind, and they just keep focusing on getting better one week at a time.”
A team that snuck into the playoffs with only four wins a year ago has turned the corner this year, quickly grasping the new schemes and putting them to use on Friday nights.
Not only has the offense produced at least 25 points in five of six games, the defense hasn't given up more than 28. And that includes games against Class 3A No. 1 Blanchard and No. 8 Tuttle.
Newcastle is the only team to hold Blanchard below 40 points this season, and one of two to hold Tuttle below 48.
“We all swarm to the ball a lot better this year,” linebacker and running back Zach Bergt said. “Last year, some people were trying to get their stats up. This year, it's about everyone getting to the ball. It's more about team.”
Jared Feroli installed the defensive schemes and brought the attacking mentality, while the new spread offense was brought by Scott O'Hara. Both coaches joined the staff early in the summer.
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