The 2013 OFA Football season was one of high achievement and dramatic improvement.
The Blue Devils regrouped from early season injuries to win the Section 10 and North Country (Section 10-7) Class C Championships and reached the regional finals of the New York State Tournament where they lost to number one ranked Section 2 Champion Hoosick Falls.
I have never seen a team go that far from Aug. 19 to the second weekend of November, said Coach Matt Tessmer at Tuesdays awards banquet at the Elks Lodge where he cited the coaches of all three levels football at OFA, the coaches of the Ogdensburg Pee Wee Football Association, the teams longtime managers Rick Amo and Moose Robillard and everyone in the school district and the community which supported the team.
These guys will always be champions.
Tessmer cited all the factors which went into the championship season but pointed out what he thought were the main underlying reasons.
No matter what the situation these guys were in they never panicked and our seniors brought toughness and competitiveness, they were smart and they were willing to work, he said.
I didnt know what our record would be but since the first day of practice I knew we would be good, make the effort and have fun.
Tessmer and fellow coaches Charlie McCormick, Tony Williams and Brett Monnat introduced the seniors and presented Spencer Mayette, Taylor Bouchard, Jordan McCormick, Josh Liebstein, Chandler Barney, Ryan Denny, Jon Tayler, Kevin Goolden, Zach Barr, Jake King and Mitchel Barber with miniature helmets.
The coaches recognized players who will be returning next season in Nolan Rufa, Nick Sweeney, Joe Dalton, Taylor Richardson, Cody Rolfe, Jon Rogers, Brent Mills, Tony Pelusi, Zade Lesperance, Deven Compo, Joe Loffler, Will Pearson, Quinton Denner, Will Pearson, Nathan Rishe and Andrew Layng along with 10 players who moved up from the JV team and made vital practice contributions in the postseason: Dallas Ashley, Adam Rickett, Jordan Murdock, Anthoni Pope, Austyn Chase, James Gibson, Cote Bidwell, Jack Kelly, Connor Bjork and Zach Worden.
In the awards segment of the evening team awards were presented and players were recognized for earning All-NAC Awards, NAC All Academic Awards and New Yor State Scholar-Athlete Team Awards.
The evening concluded with the presentation of the special team awards.
The Bob Hynes Memorial Award went to Nolan Rufa, the OFA Devil Pride Award went to Zach Barr, the Outstanding Lineman Award went to Kevin Goolden, the Outstanding Defensive Lineman Award went to Jake King, the Outstanding Special Teams Player Award went to Spencer Mayette, the Outstanding Defensive Player Award went to Jordan McCormick, the Dixie Walker Memorial Award went to Taylor Bouchard, Jon Tayler was honored with the first annual Coach Ron Johnson Multi-Task Award and Josh Liebstein received the Outstanding Offensive Player Award.
The Blue Devils produced nine NAC All-Academic Award recipients and formed a 12-player New York State Scholar-Athlete Team contingent.
Receiving NAC All-Academic awards were: Zach Barr, Taylor Bouchard, Kevin Goolden, Andrew Layng, Jordan McCormick, Nathan Rishe, Jon Rogers, Nolan Rufa and Jon Tayler.
Forming the NYS Scholar-Athlete team contingent were: Taylor. Rufa, Bouchard, Rogers, McCormick, Barr and Goolden and Taylor Richardson, Jake King, Tony Pelusi, Josh Liebstein and Chandler Barney.
First Team: Nolan Rufa, Jon Tayler, Josh Liebstein (OFA Offensive Player of the Game in regional finals vs Hoosick Falls), Jordan McCormick (OFAs Defensive Player of the game in regional finals vs Hoosick Falls) and NAC Lineman of the Year Kevin Goolden.
Second Team: Jake King.
Sportsmanship Award: Zach Barr.