The Etna Lions came away with a hard-fought 14-6 home win against the Hoopa Warriors on Friday night.
With the victory, Etna improved to 2-0 overall and are already one victory away from equaling last season's win total. Hoopa fell to 0-2 overall.
The Lions are on the road this Friday against 1-0 Chester.
Below, Etna head coach Wade Dickinson answers questions about Friday's win.
Wade, are there any highlights that stood out to you?
The biggest highlight of the evening was when Zack Fleener returned an interception for 50 yards for a touchdown at the end of the half. J.T. Murray and Hayden Kaae applied great pressure on the Hoopa quarterback, forcing him to make a bad decision.
What were some of the keys for your team to have come away with the victory on Friday night?
Again, it was a team effort. The defense was stellar Friday night. Both teams were very physical and we took advantage of opportunities when they were given.
What were some of the things you felt the squad did well and a few things you still need to work on.
Our team stayed focused on what we were trying to do. Hoopa is a good club and was not giving much up on defense. We stayed patient and stuck to our game plan, eventually we had an opportunity when Harrison Hogan hit Lukas Nadig for an 80-yard touchdown pass late in the game. Defensively, we played tough all nigh. On occasion we got beat outside, something we will address this week preparing for Chester.
What was it like for you and the team to win the home opener in front of your fans?
I think the kids loved being at home. It's always nice to have the community support and then get the victory as well. Hopefully we can keep it going.
Can you tell me about a few standout players for your squad.
I mentioned before some names that were big in this game, but really our line which was way under sized compared to Hoopa came up huge all night. They are Andrew Stone, Hayden Kaae , Austin Winlklehausen, Wade Thackeray, Collin Robinson, J.T. Murray and Zack Fleener. Honestly, our season will go as these guys go. We are only as good as they are. I am proud of how this group stepped up and fought all night long.
Anything else you would like to add.
Kent Johnson played one of his best games, coming through with three or four big receptions when we needed him. I anticipate more good things from him this season.