Bridgeport football back with a vengeance in 2022

Finished last season with a loss in the AAA semi-finals
Published: Aug. 1, 2022 at 5:24 PM EDT
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BRIDGEPORT, W.Va (WDTV) - Bridgeport football was one of the most dominant teams in West Virginia football last season. The single-wing offense is more than just run-first. It’s run over. The team produced 4,999 rushing yards last season. Despite historic numbers, senior Phil Reed says stats don’t matter unless they’re in the win column.

“We don’t look at statistics. We’re just looking to win games, get out there and punish people,” said Reed. “You got to be tough. You got to be willing to get on someone’s hip and be willing to block.”

The hard nosed, punishing offense that Reed describes destroyed teams last season. Bridgeport produced two 1500 yard rushers in 2021. When you think about the impact, consider this: only 10 players have hit the mark for the Indians since 1997, and Bridgeport had two of those guys on the same team. A mentality like that begins when you first put on the pads.

“Stick I, all through youth football,” said Charlie Brazier. “Transition to single wing was the same thing, same mentality.”

But stats aren’t everything. Ryan Hall says that those guys didn’t even know that they hit that mark last season.

“They, I don’t think, were really even looking at stats. They didn’t even know where they were,” said Hall. “I think it’s the same way this year. We just got to keep striving for hard work. In the games and practices, keep working hard.”

As head coach Tyler Phares enters his second year at the helm, the mentality hasn’t changed. It’s 100%, even without the pads.

“We don’t give anything around here. Our motto is if you don’t block, you don’t get the rock,” said coach Phares. “We’ll wait and see which backs emerge. Who’s the better blocker? Who’s going to run the ball physically? Who’s going to take care of the football?”

Bridgeport fell to Martinsburg in the semifinals, ending the season in 2021. While no one is getting ahead of themselves, a rematch is definitely in the back of their mind.

“We’ve been thinking about them all offseason,” said Brazier. “It’s our motivation. 22 points better. We’re coming back this year with a vengeance.”

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