In 2019, the Hamlin Pied Pipers made an improbable run to the state title game against Mart where they lost 25-20, but being state runner up is not something to hang their head about, especially when they had their best season in school history. Now in 2020, they try to actually claim the state title. They lose a few guys in Jevon Williams and Austin Lozano, however, they do return Braydin Warner, Jackson Sepeda and Ethan Byerly guys that can make some noise on their team. They said they’re not worried about the pressure of trying to make it back to state this season.
Hamlin senior Ethan Byerly said, “There’s definitely expectations, but all the pressure we’re feeling we’re putting on ourselve. We expect to get there and that’s something we really want and working hard towards.”
Hamlin Head coach Russell Lucas said, “Our non-district schedule is very tough, so we better focus on that and then winning a district championship is always our focus, because if that doesn’t transpire, that other goal is not obtainable.”
With the experience the Pied Pipers do return to the team, they certainly keep their status as a 2A powerhouse. With a mixture of players from the 2019 state championship team and talented newcomers, Hamlin is confident in the 2020 campaign.
Hamlin senior Jackson Sepeda said, “It’s nice to have those guys. When you have Ethan who’s about 6’3″, he’s a dog on the defensive side and Braydin can sling it, so it always helps to have two peole like that on both sides of the ball, makes it a lot easier on other people.”
Lucas said, “We have some guys that are seniors this year that played part of the season last year on the JV that are now gonna be at least a one-way starter or a two-way starter. Like I said, it’s their turn, so that’s the expectation from us and I think they’re wanting to be apart of that and do that, so we’re just looking forward to seeing them grow up.”
Hamlin begins the season at home against the Stamford Bulldogs August 28th.