Glenwood embracing increase in attention, expectations

As Glenwood head coach Jason Gibson walked round The Swamp on Thursday, he identified the stadium’s current renovations.

A crew was exhausting at work within the Phenix Metropolis warmth putting in the ultimate items of a fence across the soccer area. The Glenwood press field has already been up to date, and the opponent’s stands throughout the sector have been changed.

The stadium enhancements are quite a bit just like the Gators program, which Gibson is within the strategy of build up.

The Gators put collectively a robust season in 2016, profitable eight video games and advancing to the AISA Class 3A semifinals. Now again with a number of playmakers from final season in addition to a handful of touted transfers, Glenwood has the seems of a program on the cusp of latest heights.

“There’s excessive expectations,” Gibson stated. “You’ve obtained a Division I extensive receiver (Cameron O’Neil) on the market that no one can cowl. I needed us to be just a little additional forward this summer time, however I can assure you should you interviewed each coach within the nation, they might say the identical factor.”

Gibson, the top coach and director of soccer operations of the Columbus Lions, admitted that final yr he needed to regulate to teaching highschool soccer for the primary time since 2004. He didn’t have the posh of chopping gamers and discovering others who match his schemes higher; it was about working with what he had.

Going into his second yr, expertise definitely gained’t be a problem.

O’Neil is likely one of the prime recruits within the space and just lately dedicated to Pittsburgh. The 6-foot-three, one hundred ninety-pound large receiver is somebody Gibson stated is all the time the most effective participant on the sector. This season, it can simply be a matter of getting him the ball.

“I do know we now have much more expertise (than final yr),” O’Neil stated. “We nonetheless should put some items collectively, however I do know we’re going to be good. The best way coach Gibson coaches, I do know we’re going to have a very good season.”

Gibson gave props to a number of Gators who’ve made strides via the summer time, together with operating again and extensive receiver Trevor Crisco, linebacker Chad Dykes and broad receiver Mason Hurd. There’s additionally quarterback Bryce Valero and defensive lineman Kelcey Allen, two switch gamers who Gibson additionally praised for his or her summer time efforts.’

Valero and Allen are just some of the skilled gamers who’ve joined Glenwood for the 2017 season. In build up the group, the curiosity from outsiders has definitely been a constructive signal.

“From a highschool participant’s standpoint, you don’t should go to a 7A faculty to go to school,” Gibson stated. “(Former Glenwood fullback) Kashe Boatner goes to Kansas, and Cam dedicated to Pitt. It doesn’t matter anymore. I feel youngsters are saying, ‘I can go to Glenwood, get an amazing schooling, play within the state playoffs yearly and get acknowledged. Why not?’”

Gibson stated his largest space of emphasis is his workforce enjoying as one. With the quite a few new additions, a number of gamers might be competing for the proper to the touch the soccer each Friday night time. The offense can solely get so many Gators the ball, so everybody being unselfish for the good thing about the staff can be a necessity.

Gibson identified that one of many penalties of final yr’s run to the playoffs is that onlookers’ expectations have modified. Earlier than, the Gators flew beneath the radar, which Gibson felt helped them upend unexpecting groups. Gibson prefers that underdog standing, nevertheless it definitely gained’t be afforded to his squad anymore.

His star wideout, nevertheless, wouldn’t have it another means.

“I just like the strain,” O’Neil stated. “I feel our group offers with it nicely. That’s what we thrive off of in video games. We like doubt.”

2017 Schedule

Aug. 18 – vs Monroe Academy (Huntingdon School)

Aug. 25 – vs Calvary Christian

Sept. 1 – vs Northside Methodist

Sept. eight – at Lee-Scott Academy

Sept. 15 – vs Tuscaloosa Academy

Sept. 22 – at Morgan Academy

Sept. 29 – vs Pike Liberal Arts

Oct. 5 – at Edgewood Academy

Oct. thirteen – vs Bessemer Academy

Oct. 20 – at Springwood Faculty

Oct. 27 – vs Abbeville Christian

Head Coach: Jason Gibson (2nd season at Glenwood, 4th general as a highschool head coach)

2016 General Document (Area Report): eight-four (four-1)

Playoffs: AISA Class 3A Semifinals

Returning Starters on Offense: three

Returning Starters on Protection: four

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