NEENAH — Everything is on the line for the Neenah Rockets football team when they head Kimberly to face the Papermakers on Friday Night.
The Rockets are having one of their best seasons in the past few decades, and this team is trying to etch their legacy in Neenah history.
“Last year on this field, last year at this school, hopefully it will help leave a legacy for this city,” said senior wide receiver Jackson Schloman.
“We’ve been having some great weeks of practice and I think the excitement of where we’re at is building and building and we continue to grow as a football team and a football staff,” said head coach Steve Jung. “We’re getting better.”
The Rockets are a perfect 7-0 on the season, winning every game by 11 points or more.
“Just playing fast and physical every game,” said senior middle linebacker Trevor McGinnis, who leads the team in tackles. “We say it every day, every practice – we practice being fast and physical and that’s just how we do it.”
“We make a lot of adjustments during our games,” said Jung. “I feel like we have to really our kids mentally prepared because we’re not as physically big as the opponents we’re going against so we work that hard on them during the week.”
On Friday night, Neenah is looking for a win over the Papermakers, something they haven’t done since 2005. They’ve been on the losing end of that matchup the last 13 times.
“We’re all motivated,” said McGinnis. “We’re all looking forward to it. I think just do the best we can and come out with a win would be huge. Kimberly is always a little different every single year. We always have a little grudge, a little bit more motivation in practice each week. In the end, it’s just another football team. Go out and beat them like everyone else.”
A victory over Kimberly wouldn’t just give them their first win over them in 13 years, it would also give the Rockets their first outright conference championship since 1987.
“It’s definitely a big one,” McGinnis said. “Definitely going to be our hardest game, biggest challenge, it’s their homecoming.”
The key to the Rockets success, taking everything one day at a time. Never looking ahead except to their next opponent and not worrying about what’s at stake.
“I’d just like to look back on it after my senior year, there’s no regrets, we did as much as we could and hopefully the results emulate that,” Schloman said.