Week 1 Preview Midgets ready to take on rival Indians
An eastern Iowa product, first-year Estherville Lincoln Central coach Mark Atwater knows the challenge the 2017 Midgets face this season.
“Our first four are against teams that have won a state title in the last 10 years,” said Atwater.
The Midgets open the season on Friday against Spirit Lake, a team that won the Class 2A State two years ago. Jumping up to Class 3A last season, the Indians finished just 5-4 overall, losing their final three games of the season to Storm Lake, Sergeant Bluff-Luton and Bishop Heelan.
Coach Atwater said he’s looking forward to the challenge of taking on the Indians.
“Watching them from the last few years, they’re very well coaches,” said Atwater. They do some really good stuff that is decently similar to what we want to do.
“I like the idea of playing them in Week 1,” he continued. “it gets our kids’ juices flowing.”
A year ago, Spirit Lake defeated ELC 33-21 in a game that featured big plays on both sides. ELC quarterback Evan Olesen finished 23-of-44 passing for 288 yards with two touchdowns, but four interceptions halted the offense.
Spirit Lake’s Nick Christensen finished 10-of-24 passing with three touchdowns including a 73-yard strike, but had no interceptions. He also ran in a 55-yard touchdown.
About Coach Atwater
Coach Atwater comes to Estherville from eastern Iowa, where he graduated from Linn-Mar High School. He is familiar with Estherville, as he wrestled for Linn-Mar and made four trips to the ELC wrestling tournament.
He played linebacker at Coe College and had success.
Last season, he coached with his dad, who retired after 27 years as the defensive coordinator at Coe.
This is her first time away from eastern Iowa.
“I love this year and it’s a joy being part of a small town,” he said.