Together: Galva and ROWVA gridders now on same side of ball

Doug Boock
Mid-County coach Tom Buck shows several Cougars a play during a 7-on-7 scrimmage Aug. 19 on the practice field behind ROWVA High School.

Between them, Galva and ROWVA high school varsity football teams have amassed over 600 wins, 61 winning seasons, 20 conference championships, 19 playoff appearances and countless memories.

Beginning Friday night, they’ll add to that list. But this time, they’ll be doing it together. The era of the Mid-County Cougars – a co-op of Galva, ROWVA and Williamsfield playes – kicks off at 7 p.m. versus Princeville at Bill Adams Field, Oneida.

Coach Tom Buck’s excited, nervous and realistic, all at once.

“I just can’t wait to get them out there and get them playing,” said Buck on Monday. “I think it’s going to be a long week.”

With 49 players in grades 9-12 on the roster – by far the largest contingent for a Galva team in years – the Cougars have spent the summer getting to know each other. Former rivals, they’ve lifted weights and run windsprints side-by-side on the field, and socialized off it. This past Friday night, when a photographer asked to take a photo of the ROWVA seniors for the RHS yearbook, the players said they wanted the Galva players in the photo also.

“They seem to be getting along real well,” Buck said. “They socialize together and they’re starting to understand what their roles are.”

The union of the two schools – plus Williamsfield, which has co-oped with Galva the past two years – will hopefully help both, especially in this age of multi-school co-ops.

“We’ve got depth we’ve never had before,” Buck said of his roster – one of the largest in the area – about 30 of which are seniors and juniors.

Physically, Buck likes what he sees. The team has decent size and speed. At least a few wins, something that’s been difficult to register the past few years in Galva, could be picked up this season.

“There’s definitely some ability there. There’s some great potential,” said Buck, a veteran mentor who took Wethersfield to a Class 1A state title a few years ago. “But it doesn’t mean anything if you can’t do it on the field.”