Cocalico senior RB/DB Aaryn Longenecker

Cocalico entered the District 3-5A playoffs as the #12 seed with a modest (6-4) record.  The Eagles were the last team to qualify for the tournament after finishing third in Section 4 of the Lancaster-Lebanon League.  These birds took flight at the right time.  Cocalico blew out top-seeded Solanco 32-8 in the semifinals before stunning undefeated Exeter 34-14 in Reiffton.  The Eagles reeled off seven consecutive victories and captured their fourth District 3 crown.  They became the highest seeded team to ever win a District 3 championship.  "I think it's really gonna be a big confidence boost for us. I think we're gonna have a new bar set for the start of this year," Aaryn Longenecker told SV Sports' Paul Roberts.  Cocalico reached the state semifinals before getting tripped up by Pine-Richland.  Longenecker is one of 21 seniors on this year's roster.  "I couldn't be more excited. It's really something I've been looking forward to. Being able to play with the people I've been playing with since I was in Pee Wee football, it's gonna be really fun," he said.  The 5'10, 175-pound RB/DB was a first team selection in Section 4 a season ago when he scored fifteen touchdowns.  Longenecker ran for 774 yards and averaged nearly 20 yards on his 16 receptions.  He caught a 42-yard TD pass in the District 3 final at Exeter.  Junior quarterback Josh Myer and all-state running back Sam Steffey are also returning.  Steffey opened a lot of eyes by rumbling for 1,829 yards and 23 scores.  "When we were younger, Sam was a straggler a little bit, but he picked it up in high school. He's showed that he can really play," stated Longenecker.  Steffey, a 190-pound fullback, can bench press over 300 pounds.  Bryce Nash, Brayden Eppinette, Dane Bollinger, Logan Brubaker, Hunter Frable, Adam Laudenslager, and Owen Weaver are all back.  The Eagles could be flying high again in 2023. 


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