Spring-Ford looking to rebound in ‘15

LIMERICK — It’s completely understandable that injuries would be hampering the Spring-Ford High School football team.

After all, football is a contact sport that often sees its participants propped up on crutches.

Barry Taglieber - For Digital First Media Spring-Ford's Ricky Venuto runs and pitches back the ball.
Spring-Ford’s Ricky Venuto runs and pitches back the ball. (Barry Taglieber/Digital First Media)

However, a large portion of the injuries that plagued the Rams this August had very little to do with gridiron contact.

It appears Spring-Ford’s preseason practices have been put in a figurative hole by those dreaded high-collision summer sports.

“We have a long way to go,” said Rams head coach Chad Brubaker, seeking to guide S-F back into the postseason after a rare season out of the playoff spotlight. “We have a lot of injuries to deal with, and most of them are not football-related.”

Brubaker said that the bulk of the injuries should not have a major bearing on the season from a strategic standpoint, as the Rams will stick pretty close to the offensive and defensive scripts they’ve utilized in recent seasons.

Where they may impact the team is in the mindset that Brubaker and his staff are trying to re-instill in his troops.

After coming up big in virtually every important game in recent years, the Rams failed to do so a year ago, dropping major confrontations with both Perkiomen Valley and Pottsgrove, a shortcoming that cost them the Pioneer Athletic Conference title and a playoff berth.

“For the first time in the last four years that I’ve been here, we didn’t win those big games,” Brubaker said. “And we used to win the fourth quarter of every game we played, and we didn’t win too many fourth quarters last year.
“We have to get back to doing that.”

Barry Taglieber - For Digital First Media Spring-Ford Head Coach Chad Brubaker.
Spring-Ford Head Coach Chad Brubaker. (Barry Taglieber/Digital First Media)

With that goal in mind, Brubaker is finding the mental part more challenging than the physical.

On the plus side, the Rams are deeper than they’ve been in a couple of seasons, with returning starters sprinkled liberally on both sides of the ball, and a number of back-ups that got meaningful playing time last year.

The offense will be run by quarterback Ricky Venuto, who is excited by the challenge of being handed the reins.

“I’m extremely excited about being the quarterback,” Venuto said. “I like the up-tempo stuff.

“We can go very fast in the up-tempo, and we have plenty of playmakers.”

Top Photo: Spring-Ford’s players go though stretching drills during summer football practice. (Barry Taglieber/Digital First Media)

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