PERRYSBURG, OH (WTOL) - The Perrysburg Yellow Jackets have been arguably the best team in Northwest Ohio over the last 3 seasons. They're currently riding a 27-game regular season winning streak and have been the top team in the NLL.
"I think the teams that have been here have set a standard and a work ethic," says Head Coach Matt Kregel. "We're gonna have to play some sophomores this year. It's up to them to play up to that standard and play at that speed in practice."
"Coach Kregel just helps everyone," says Noah Lenz. "He doesn't focus on just the starters. He focuses on all the kids are out there. Even if you don't get that much playing time, he'll focus on you. So, he's preparing for the future and the season at the same time."
But this years team will certainly have a different look. Gone is Trevor Hafner who was one of the best athletes in school history.
Replacing him at Quarterback will be Spencer Backus who saw time late in a few games last season and had one start against rival Maumee at the end of the year.
"It definitely helps, because he had pressure applied to him," says Kregel. "When you're a sophomore with a 9-game win streak on the line against your rival in Week 10, there's some pressure there. We were actually down a little bit and he had to bring us back and get going. I think that pressure is what really did him some good. He's been in real, meaningful, game situations and he's been through everything."
"That varsity start was just a lot of fun to do. It really helped get in to the flow of the varsity offense, because obviously it's a lot different than any JV or Freshman. And it really helped me mesh with the older guys that are still here, returning seniors, and returning lettermen"
Backus and the Jackets will no doubt be one of the top teams in the NLL again this year. Perrysburg opens up with Clay.