Decatur Seahawks – will they go all the way?

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Courtesy of Kora Ketner

Under the Friday night lights, the Seahawks beat the Lions 42-6 in the first round of playoffs.

The Stephen Decatur High School football team has advanced to the first round of the Bayside Conference playoffs after a Nov. 5 victory against Queen Anne’s County High School.

After a strong fight, the Seahawks won with a score of 42-6, making this the first time the Seahawks beat the Lions since 2012. Their second playoff game is scheduled for tomorrow night in Salisbury against Wicomico High School. Kickoff is 6 p.m. at Wicomico County Stadium.

Their final game of the regular season was an Oct. 29 victory at Snow Hill High School where Decatur won with a score of 58-0. With a 5-3 record, the Stephen Decatur High School football team has been in better shape this year than in years past. The Seahawks are now in fourth place in Bayside 3A/2A and will continue to move forward into the Bayside playoffs and then the State Championship.

“I believe anything is possible, and I am excited for us about advancing to playoffs,” said head coach Jacob Coleman, who has been the head coach for the past three years at Decatur. He previously coached for 15 years at Cambridge High School.

With dominant players he can consistently rely on, Coleman and his coaching staff say they have the opportunity to go all the way this season.

In years past, Decatur was not known for their stellar football game winning records. In 2004, the Seahawks held an 11-1 record. Decatur has only been the top seed in the Bayside Conference once, in the 2010-2011 school year, when the team went 6-5, according to maxpreps.com, a website that keeps stats on high school sports teams.

A bond between teammates is extremely important, both on and off of the field. Team chemistry adds to the overall success of the team and leads to relationships that may remain for many years.

“The thing that has changed the most is that we’ve all become closer outside of football,” said starting quarterback Ashten Snelsire. “Everyone is happy to be at practice, which makes us all have better and effective practices everyday. I love this team and all the players and I hope it creates friendships that last for a long time.”

Along with coaches, players are impressed by their team and how well they have collectively grown in skill. Tight end and defensive back Luke Mergott said he has witnessed this team improve in many ways during the years he has been a member.

“I have seen our team grow by commitment on and off the field. We have all been committed to the weight room and the classroom, just as much as we have been on the field,” Mergott said.

Marqui Henry, wide receiver and cornerback, said his team grew enormously throughout this season thanks to talent, athleticism, and good coaches.

“Less injuries and more focus on the team helped,” he said, “because we know our strengths on both sides, and we know our opponents better than they know themselves. This team is my family and I love everyone like my brother. They have so much more potential for the future.”

Overall, coaches, players and spectators can all see the improvement of this team through the increase in drive and determination to do better, as well as the strength of bonds between each player. As the Seahawks continue to advance in the playoffs, fans anticipate great successes in the upcoming years.