State Champs Visit Future Marauders

PHOTO%3A+The+newly-crowned+state+champion+Marauders+talk+with+students+at+Hollidaysburg+Catholic.
PHOTO: The newly-crowned state champion Marauders talk with students at Hollidaysburg Catholic.

PHOTO: The newly-crowned state champion Marauders talk with students at Hollidaysburg Catholic.

Jordan Rhone

Jordan Rhone

PHOTO: The newly-crowned state champion Marauders talk with students at Hollidaysburg Catholic.

Jordan Rhone, Editor

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BLAIR COUNTY – It’s been just over a week since the Marauders captured their school’s first state title with a 19-18 victory over the Clairton Bears. Their first public appearance since the historic win took place at the five Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic feeder schools. The elementary school tour included stops at St. Johns in Lakemont, St. Patricks in Newry, Hollidaysburg Catholic, St. Rose of Lima, and Altoona Central Catholic.

Excitement filled the air as the ten senior Marauders filed into the schools where some students were being surprised, while others were anxiously awaiting the celebrity-like football heroes. Highlighted by autographs, photos, and player discussion, the Marauder football players were looked upon as rock stars by the children.

PHOTO: Mr. Cacciotti introduces members of the state championship squad.

PHOTO: Mr. Cacciotti introduces members of the state championship squad at ACCS.

Saint John The Evangelist student Michael Woolridge was thrilled that the state champions stopped by his school. “It’s awesome!,” said Woolridge. His friend, Ethan Miller, said his favorite player is elite tailback & safety Sam McCloskey. Fellow classmate, Gavin Lambeck, added that lineman Owen Wolf was his most admired Marauder.

Caleb Ruggles, a student at Saint Patrick’s in Newry, just finished up getting autographs from the players when asked how he enjoyed the team joining them for a short time. “It’s pretty cool,” Ruggles said. His first choice when it came to meeting a player was “number 15,” referring to Villanova-bound quarterback Brandon Chadbourn.

Senior Brandon Chadbourn signs a football for a young fan at Saint John's in Lakemont.

PHOTO: Senior Brandon Chadbourn signs a football for a young fan at Saint John’s in Lakemont.

At Hollidaysburg Catholic, student Josh Welteroth is familiar with some of the Marauders and was excited to have them visit. “I know a few of them. I went to their game against Penn Cambria earlier this season,” Welteroth said. Although he can’t play football in high school, he says he’ll be in the Dawg Pound to cheer his friends on in a few years.

For state champion Anthony Livoti, traveling to see the younger kids is a privilege. “It’s an honor to see all the support we get from them. It’s a big deal. We know they’re going to be the future Marauders so we have to treat them well.”

PHOTO: Senior Matt Gormley signs a picture for a young fan at Saint Rose of Lima in Altoona.

PHOTO: Senior Matt Gormley signs a picture for a young fan at Saint Rose of Lima in Altoona.

Bishop Guilfoyle Athletic Director/Assistant Principal, Mike Cacciotti, discussed the “three R’s”, respect, responsibility, and doing the right thing at the elementary schools. He also asked the BG student-athletes what it was like to incorporate faith into athletics as well as respecting each other on and off the field. “You have to give respect in order to earn respect,” said senior Matt Gormley.

Patricia Labriola, principal at Altoona Central Catholic, was especially excited to host the senior Marauders since nine of the ten are ACCS alumni. “By a show of hands, how many of you went to ACCS?,” Labriola asked the players. One by one the hands of the nine senior stars flew up in the air. The gymnasium erupted with cheers for the homecoming of their state champions.

View a video recap of the state champion Marauders on their caravan to the parochial schools below:

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