CANNING, N.S. - The Northeast Kings Education Centre’s football team is looking to advance to the provincial final as returning champions.
“If we can make it to it this will be our fifth finals in five years straight,” said coach Reg Ogilvie.
The Canning-based team will host J.H. Gillis of Antigonish in semifinal play Nov. 11 at 2 p.m. The winner will advance to the provincial championship game Nov. 17. If NKEC wins the right to host, the championship will be held at Acadia at 1 p.m.
Ogilvie believes the team has what it takes to make that happen after an undefeated, eight-game season.
“We’re really young. We’re pretty much all Grade 10s and just three or four seniors but they’ve all had quite a bit of experience playing football, so it’s been a combination of that and good coaching from my coaching staff,” he said.
“And these kids are just really focused.”
Ogilvie credits the Valley Bulldogs Minor Football program with aiding in the development of young athletes looking to excel in the sport.
“The coaches down there have done a great job with these young men, so it’s made the job a lot easier,” he said.
“This group would probably be the team that has the most football IQ that I’ve ever had.”
He said NKEC has benefited from an influx of young players coming from the Bulldogs program, but there’s always room for more.
“Everybody can play. I always call it the least discriminatory sport there is… you can be small, you can be large, you can be slow and you can be fast – and there’s a spot on the team for you,” he said.
“We’re always recruiting.”
Ogilvie anticipates that a number of NKEC Titans will likely move on to play football at the post-secondary level after high school. He listed Logan Scott and Logan Potter as two examples of players capable of competing in CIS or AUS conferences.
“I’ve coached both of them since they were in Grade 9. They’re just a treat. They’re just fantastic young men and great players, great leaders on the team... they basically set the tone for the rest of them.”