Football practice begins in Sparta
Football team won championship last year with 40-0 rout of River Dell
The Sparta High School football team practiced on Friday, Aug. 8. The Sparta Spartans are getting ready during the summer for the upcoming season that begins in September.
Sparta High School running back Lucas Faria (13) about to catch the ball as teammates and varsity coach Frank Marchiano watch.
A Sparta wide receiver and cornerback during a play.
Senior Sparta High School quarterback Anthony Argula throws the ball during practice.
Sparta High School varsity football coach Frank Marchiano.
Contact causes the ball to come loose.
by george leroy hunter
SPARTA — The Sparta High School football team practiced on Friday, Aug. 8. The Sparta Spartans are getting ready during the summer for the upcoming season that begins in September. The school is located in Sparta Township, New Jersey.
The Spartans, earned the North 1, Group 3 championship by shutting down River Dell Golden Hawks, 40-0, at MetLife Stadium last December. They intend to equal that success this season.
Sparta opened the 2013 season with a 30-8 beatdown of Bayonne High School. Junior running back Lucas Faria rushed for 218 yards and four touchdowns.
That game was a sign of good things to come for the entire season.
The Spartans finished the championship season 11-1-0. Their only loss was dealt to them by crosstown rivals, the Pope John XXIII Regional High School Lions. The Spartans fell to the Lions 31 - 27 in the last minute left of the fourth quarter. Pope John's Drew Daniel's interception sealed Sparta's fate in that Oct. 2013 thriller.
Despite loosing several starting players to graduation, the Spartans have been practicing since June and working with what they have in preparations for the 2014 football season.
Fifth year Sparta varsity head coach Frank Marchiano said, "We lost some kids to graduation with three of them scholarship players. But we have plenty of talented kids coming back and they have been working out since June. We've got some seniors stepping up and being leaders in combination with some promising underclassmen. All of these guys understand it was a great season last year, but this is a new season."
"No one is going to care what you did last season," Marchiano continued. "We are going to have to go out there and earn everything in this league and the players have taken that mindset. They've worked extremely hard, they've put a lot of time into it and now it is time to get down to business."
Sparta has some strong returning players to build on such as seniors Lucas Faria, first team all-state running back/defensive back, Teddy Fischer, all-conference wide receiver/defensive back, Skyler Fransisco, all-conference wide receiver/defensive back, Jake Vogel, offensive lineman/defensive lineman, and Anthony Argula projected to be the starting quarterback.
The Spartans are no stranger to the rebuilding routine. Players have stepped up in the past.
This is a new season, new team and a new schedule.
Only time will tell if the Sparta Spartans can repeat that championship season.
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