Messwood begins strong, beats Pius XI 18-8


Maya Lindvall

The football team in one of their recent games at home. The addition of many new players and returning players with unique skills helped start the season strong.

 The Messwood football team is off to a strong start this season, winning 18 to 8 against Pius XI on August 19th. 

A lot of changes have been made to the coaching staff of the Messwood football team this school year, with the appointment of Head Coach Stevie Calvin, along with three other assistant coaches. Coach Calvin has been working with high school football teams since 1994, and has nine years of experience coaching at North Dakota State University. 

Now that he’s in Shorewood, Calvin is ready to be back coaching high school football. 

“I’m really excited to be here. The community and the kids at the school are great, I love working with them,” said Calvin. 

Calvin believes that Messwood team members have made a lot of progress since the beginning of the season.

“I think the [players] are starting to really understand our play system,” Calvin said. “There are a lot of bells and whistles to our system, and the guys are gaining confidence that they can play with any team and do well,.”

The coaches have made some changes to how the plays are learned and signaled, moving to a name-based system, as well as using more practice time for reviewing them. 

“We’ve spent more time focusing on plays, getting ready for the game on Friday,” said Omar Acevedo, junior. “[During the summer], it was mostly classroom, weightroom, classroom, weightroom.”

This season will be memorable, due to the four new coaches and overall progression of the players over the summer. 

“I grew and got stronger, both mentally and physically,” Acevedo said. “The aspect of age [and experience] is a huge factor.”

In years prior, the team was primarily made up of underclassmen, differing from typical high school teams. Acevedo believes this coming season will prove more successful due to the amount of upperclassmen.  

“Last year [the team] was mostly made up of sophomores and juniors, so 15-16 year olds, going up against 17-18 year olds,” Acevedo said. “Those years of experience are very crucial.”

“We have a lot of young guys playing right now, so it bodes well for the [future of the] program,”

— Stevie Calvin, head coach

In addition to junior and senior members, there have been many new players coming up from the middle school. Some players are new to football, having just started their freshman year.

“Last year, the middle school team was very small so a lot of the new players are in their first year of football,” said Acevedo. 

Calvin is hopeful for the future of the team with the addition of new players. 

“We have a lot of young guys playing right now, so it bodes well for the [future of the] program,” Calvin said.

The team is feeling good heading about their prospects in the postseason. 

“I think we have a chance to surprise some people. We are at a place right now where we can play with anybody, and start to beat some of those teams,” Calvin said.

The people you’re going to be with, sweat with and bleed with; Football is family.

— Omar Acevedo, junior

To anyone thinking of joining the football team, Calvin wants to stress that it is not too late. 

“Just come out and talk to us coaches, or send an email. Come to one of the practices to be around the guys and to feel the camaraderie we have here,” Calvin said. “It’s the ultimate team sport, and it teaches you how to work hard, and it teaches you lifelong lessons both on and off the field.”

To players, working as a team is the key to success, and they’ve only become closer through the years.

“You get really close with the grades above and below you, because they’re now your people; the people you’re going to play with, the people you’re going to be with, sweat with and bleed with,” Acevedo said. “Football is family.”

If you are interested in joining the football program, contact Coach Calvin at [email protected], or come to an after school practice. It’s an exciting new season, and the team is looking forward to getting out and winning more games.