The Morgan Huskies have rushed for over 2,000 yards in each of the previous three football seasons. They have won 27 games since 2013 on the strength of great rushing from Jake Ward (5,835 yards) and Gabe Eriksen (2,471 yards). Both of those young men have moved on from the Morgan School.
Speaking of the institution that is Morgan-Clinton, the physical structure has received a much-needed facelift. The original schoolhouse on Main Street was founded in 1870. The most-recent structure, built in 1950 and if you have been there, you may have thought that it was not renovated since then, has been replaced with a 140,000 square foot modern campus created by FIP Construction.
“I like it,” proclaimed offensive guard Ivan Villanueva. “It is nice and new. It feels like I am in like a college campus and it makes me feel a little older.”
There are several nods to the main street school at Morgan’s fabulous state-of-the-art facility, including a bell from the original schoolhouse. The goal for the Huskies behind second year head coach Peter Nye is to honor the past to build toward future success.
“The kids love it,” exclaimed head coach Peter Nye. “They love that there is this resurgence of the tradition from the original Morgan school down on Main Street. They are hungry to sing the Alma Mater this year, Ave Morgan.”
Peter has assigned his players to memorize The Morgan School fight song, “Ave Morgan”. The Huskies were happy to oblige my request when prompted to belt out the anthem as a unit. Expect an encore of “Ave Morgan” each time they win a football game, in addition to ringing Ye Olde Morgan Bell.
The finest component of the Morgan squad is the team’s offensive line, which returns all five starters in 2016. Center Matt Capece,
guards Ivan Villanueva and George Limsani, tackles Zach McCray and Deshaun James will hold down a line that must protect a new quarterback, Madden Ward. They will also have to create space to engineer the latest feature back in the Morgan attack.
“We are not that big of a line, but still get the job done,” declared Capece. “We are fast, so we are ready for this and we are not going to let anything stop us.”
Gabe’s brother Isaac Eriksen and Eli Luchuk will compete for the lion’s share of carries in the upcoming season. The Huskies received just one carry from that combination in 2015. Coach Nye is still confident that his team can take the Pequot League by storm despite key losses from 2015.
“There’s a lot of great coaches who want the conference to grow,” offered Nye. “They want to improve not just their programs, but the programs that they are competing with. I think that philosophy is: we are fielding teams so that you have somebody to play.”
-Frankie Graziano, CPTV Sports
BTW: Check out THIS gallery to see photos of NEW Morgan School.