York and Willowbrook on the field at the homecoming game. Photo by LJ Galdo

It’s come to that time

October 19, 2018

As the season slowly comes to an end, the Dukes will take their last ride together on their home field tonight against Downers Grove North. The Dukes currently sit at 3-5, looking to advanced to 4-5 and knock Downers Grove North out of the playoff contention. The Trojan’s record is currently 4-4 looking for a playoff berth, but this game does not only have a playoff game vibe already to it, but it is the last chance the seniors get to play for the Duke football program ever again. A total of 35 seniors are going to be gone next season.

“There is no other emotion that I feel other than emptiness,” junior AJ Datoli said. “This is one group of guys that can never be replaced. I love all of them, but in all different ways. Every single one of them has made a major impact in my life and I thank them for that.”

Although it is very sad for most of the juniors to get over the fact that they won’t have the chance to play another down with the seniors, for the seniors it’s even harder. Through their four years being together, this one means the most for the seniors. This, like the juniors, is their last chance playing organized football for the Duke football program. When talking to senior Fabian Sahagun about the football season he seemed joyful about the topic.

“It’s pretty exciting and sad; for me it’s the last sport I’ll ever be playing, so that’s pretty sad that after four years it’s coming to an end, but exciting to have some free time and focus on other things in life.”

For senior Riley Hendron, it felt as if time had flown right past him and back to day one. Riley is the starting free safety for the Dukes. When asked about his final thoughts about playing for the Dukes for his last time, he takes pride being in the position he’s at right now, yet it felt so fast for Riley.

“I take a lot of pride in being a duke. It feels like yesterday that I was a freshman looking up to the seniors,” Hendron said, “Now I’m a senior about to play my last game and it’s gonna feel weird that I won’t be able to play ever again. Especially playing for a team like the Dukes.”

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