BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — The McKinley Macks put together a fantastic season this year, going undefeated through the regular season, then last Friday night taking down Sweet Home 19-18 to punch their ticket to the second round of the Class A playoffs.
“This was huge for us, for the school as well, just to be among the rest of the other two teams that did make it to the second round, it’s a big pleasure for us,” McKinley head coach Brian Davis said, “But we’re not looking to end here, we’re looking to go further along.”
This is only the third McKinley team in school history to make it to the semifinals, and this week, they’re coming into the game with the underdog mentality that has driven this team all season long.
“It’s a little bit of pressure because everyone has been doubting us all season, but it’s going to be exciting when we do,” junior running back Takeo Funderburk said.
“They had us ranked low this year, so we hold it as a chip on our shoulder year and just used it,” junior receiver Henry Hunter said. “Look where we’re at now.”
“Honestly, it’s a special team,” Coach Davis said.
“Going into the season, we were ranked 7th in our division, and we took that as a chip on our shoulder,” Davis echoed. “We have a really good junior class and we have a tough knit group of seniors and they just mesh well. That’s what makes this group so special.”
“They find a way to bite down and get a victory, they hold each other accountable, and I think that’s the difference. That’s what makes this team so special.”
“Really just the chemistry that we have, coming from our freshman year playing together, some of us have been playing since little league,” Funderburk said. “We just keep improving.”
“It feels really good to be a Mack right now,” Hunter said. “The bond we have between the coaches and players, everybody working together, it was just perfect.”
As if putting together a perfect season wasn’t enough pressure for these guys, McKinley is looking to continue making history this week. The Macks play West Seneca West on Friday, and a win over the Indians would send McKinley to New Era Field in the Section VI Finals for the first time in school history.