BY RICKY ST. CLAIR Press-Republican
---- — PLATTSBURGH — Plattsburgh North Stars coach Scott Aguglia has been a big believer in his team’s ability to recover from adversity since training camp began in June.
One week removed from a 28-13 loss at Watertown, the North Stars (4-1) look to bounce back as they host the Vermont Ice Storm in Empire Football League (EFL) action for 7 p.m. tonight.
“It’s an opportune time for us to bounce back and make a statement, not only to ourselves, but the other teams we’ll play the rest of the way,” Aguglia said.
Entering last weekend’s contest versus Watertown, Plattsburgh was averaging just over 50 points per game.
Watertown’s defense, however, managed to contain quarterback Harry Rascoe and his receiving corps, holding the North Stars’ offense to zero points.
Aguglia doesn’t think it will be a concern tonight, though.
“We did have some issues last week in the red zone,” Aguglia said. “We’ve addressed the problems that Watertown presented in practice this week, and I think we’ll be set to go (tonight).”
Plattsburgh opened its EFL season with a 49-0 thrashing of the Ice Storm (1-4) at South Burlington High School July 13.
Rascoe threw three touchdown passes and ran another in for a score.
Josh Nephew, Bret Boyer, Dexter Geoghagan, Craig Bujold and Brandon St. John also reached the end zone in the shutout win.
“It was the first game of the season,” Aguglia said. “We learned a lot about ourselves. Now, we’re going to find out a little bit more — that is whether we can deal with the adversity of a loss and be able to rebound.”
Vermont is averaging 5.2 points per game, excluding a 2-0 forfeit win over Montreal.
The Ice Storm defense is surrendering 35.6 points per game and has allowed 130 points in the first half of games this season.
“Anytime we play Vermont, they’re going to bring it from the opening kickoff to the final whistle,” Aguglia said. “They’re a proud organization. I expect them to play hard, and we expect a challenge.”
One day prior to the Watertown loss, Aguglia said, “We can’t falter because it could come back to bite us.”
Now, after the 15-point defeat, the second-year coach doesn’t think there’s additional pressure to win on a week-to-week basis.
“I don’t there is anymore added pressure,” Aguglia said. “From the onset, the goal has been to win every game, so we’re going to continue on that path.”