- Teams throughout Wisconsin are busy getting ready to kickoff their seasons. But in Three Lakes, after several seasons with very few players, and even fewer victories, they are playing a whole new game.
It's a new chapter for the Three Lakes football team. After years of struggeling just to even field a team, let alone win, the Bluejays are switching from 11-man football - to the newly approved 8-game game. The WIAA approved of the new format in January, with teams making a three-year commitment.
"I think it will be a cool change, " said three Lakes senior wide receiver and defensive end Riley Liebscher. "I don't know too much about it, but can't wait to see what happens."
When your used to coaching the traditional game - there are some changes, but the players don't seem to mind.
"I've seen some 8-man football on youtube," added senior Brent LaDuke. "It's really not that much different."
"It's like learning game," countered head coach Brian Fritz. "now you ahve 3 interior linemen (as opposed to five in 11-man football) and four receivers and a quarterback."
It's not the first time Three Lakes has fielded less than 11 players for at one time. In fact, Carl Levandoski played on the first team in 1947 - they played 6 to a side back then.
"We didn't have much for uniforms back then. They mostly would compare to the practice jerseys of today," said Levandoski.
Three Lakes played 6-man ball unitl 1949 - when they switched to the 11-man game.
Coach Fritz adds, "We are road warriors this season. We travel all the way to Luck, to Elkhart Lake, even some games in Michigan."
Three Lakes will play a seven game independent season.
Play some teams in Michigan....
"With our size, this will prevent freshmen facing the upperclassmen from other teams," Emerson Hegeman, a senior offensive and defensive lineman. "It just makes the game safer for the whole team."
Three Lakes will play a scrimmage at Stockbridge on August 24th. The Bluejays will officially open the year at Luck on August 30th.
|Story By: Newswatch 12 Sports