What a difference a year makes. We’ve come such a long way; and yet, we have so much further to go. And we need you with us to get there. After all, Old Glory is your team as much as it’s ours.
We’re at the mid-point of the 2023 MLR season. A year ago, we felt a need to go back to the drawing board to construct the long-term future of Old Glory. Today, we’re in the thick of a playoff race and have solidified and grown the core of players who will serve as the heart of Old Glory for years to come. Moreover, we have a clear plan to continue building the team to become both a regular championship contender and one of the strongest developers of domestic talent for the USA national teams.
Today finds us in second place on the table in MLR’s Eastern Division. The top three teams in each Division will make the playoffs. Our opportunity is real, but with seven games left, we know our work is cut out for us. Our coaches and players have kept us in the hunt with not only victories but also strong performances in our defeats, earning bonus points for each loss by seven points or less (meaning a competitive game) or scoring four tries or more (meaning an exciting game).
Clearly our new coaching leadership, all of our pre-season preparation, and our roster enhancements have paid results. Our first-half performance has seen the team deliver a 4-1 home record at Segra Field (and really, just a few missed passes away from 5-0!). As for Old Glory’s players, they are clearly giving their all to this season. Our captain, Jamason Fa’anana-Schultz has demonstrated exactly what it means to “lead by example,” today ranking second in the league in both tackles and carries, while Tito Diaz-Bonilla leads the entire league in kicking meters and is in the top five of successful goal kicks. Although we’ve taken our lumps with injuries, we’ve continued adding impactful talent throughout the season, whom we expect will make huge second-half contributions – such as Langilangi Haupeakui, Kyle Baillie, and Niko Jones.
In short, we couldn’t be more excited about where we’re going, and we hope you are, too. After all, Old Glory needs you along with us on this journey. We have three home games remaining in the 2023 regular season, starting with May 14 versus the Division-leading New England Freejacks (whom we came within three points of beating in their own house back in early March). And our home support makes all the difference – the 16th OG and the noise you bring give the players heart and help them fight through the toughest minutes. And don’t forget that the Segra Field experience has been enhanced this year with free parking, live music on the concourse, better food choices with a variety of food trucks, the return of the beer garden, and more. And how cool were our city Cherry Blossom jerseys? Without a doubt the league best!
Come on out and help us pack Segra Field for these last three games! If we all do our part, maybe we can keep this party going for a few more games!
-Chris Dunlavey and Paul Sheehy