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With a new head coach, Hortonville football looks to turn their fortune around

With a new head coach, Hortonville football looks to turn their fortune around
Posted at 7:00 PM, Jul 20, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-20 20:00:22-04

HORTONVILLE — Football season is upon us and down in Hortonville, the high school football team is putting in the work to try and get the program back on the right track.

They haven’t had a winning season since 2019 and they have a new head coach taking over, but they feel like they have all the ingredients for success.

“It wasn't what we were looking for last year, but I think we’re going to have a much more positive season this year,” said senior linebacker Miles Sillas. “We have a stronger defense and some young guys coming up to play and I'm very confident in where we're headed this year.”

Hortonville may have finished 2-7 last year, but they lost a handful of games by one score.

“I think we just need to finish,” said junior quarterback Broden Butzin. “Last year a lot of games come down to the wire – just need to execute some of the small things and we’re winning those games.”

Defensive coordinator the last two years, former Truman State football player Nick Reichert has now taken over the program as their head coach. He says turning things around starts with trust.

“There's going to be tough times in life and there’s going to be tough times in football games, we’re going to be down at some point this year – our difference has to be just some mental toughness to get through that and trust in each other.”

"He bring[s] a great energy, great team chemistry and we're ready to roll with him," said Butzin.

Watching Hortonville's practice it’s hard not to notice how hands and involved Reichert is in coaching up his players.

“I just see it as we got two hours of work and I got to make sure I don't waste a minute,” Reichert said.”That’s the way I am. I just know our limited time, I'm very detailed on scripts and we follow along and try to make sure we get through everything and right now we’re trying to put in a brand new offense. You just can’t waste that time.”

The Polar Bears were young last year, they could’ve been named the Polar Cubs. But that youth movement paved the way for a group that is now an experienced bunch. For quarterback Broden Butzin, it’s nice to have all of his weapons returning. Butzin started every game but one last year as just a sophomore.

“It's huge,” he said. “You know kind of how your guys run, how you can interact with teammates. it really helps to get back on the same page as them.”

This team is ready to put the past few years of losing behind them.

“I'm hungry. I'm ready to win some games this year,” said Butzin.

Hortonville has a huge test to begin their season. They host West De Pere the state runner-up in Division 2 last season on Friday, August 18.