AMBOY — The Amboy-LaMoille football team was eager to earn a trip back to the postseason this fall after ending a nine-season streak of playoff berths with a 4-5 campaign last year.
Now, after a 9-3 season that included a trip to the Class 2A quarterfinals, this year’s Clippers proved to be successful getting the program back on its winning track.
“It means so much after all the work we put in over the summer and how much we wanted it,” senior running back Cooper Nelson said. “We wanted to change how we were as a team and how we stood against the other teams. We made it the farthest in the playoffs we’ve been in a while. We wanted to show everyone how well we could do.
“I’m extremely proud of everyone. Everyone did their own share. I’m proud of how hard we fought. We never backed down. I’m extremely proud.”
Clipper coach Gary Jones said his team dedicated itself to improvement after last fall.
“We had a meeting after the season was over last year, and we said ‘Here’s what we’ve got to do to get better next year.’ They stepped up and dedicated themselves,” Jones said. “I thought they did a great job all year. They did an excellent job with offseason work and everything all summer.”
It paid off with the Clippers restoring tradition.
“Our town loves football, and I think it brought the excitement back,” Jones said of the Clippers’ postseason run. “Last year, going 4-5 and not making it (to the playoffs), it got a little hunger back into the system a little bit. This year meant a lot to the town and our school itself.”
Nelson said he and his teammates were grateful to be part of the turnaround season.
“It means so much. We’re going to be compared with some of the good teams and down the road if someone makes it to this spot they’ll remember us,” Nelson said.
Chris Yucus can be reached at 220-6995, or at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @NT_SportsChris.