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Eli Vanderwagen looks to make a name for himself in senior season The 6'2'', 175 pound free safety vows to make team work and leadership central to his last high school football games. // BY BRIDGET NAUMAN

Eli Vanderwagen, a senior defensive back for the Sequoit varsity football team transferred to Antioch from River Falls, Wisconsin, after his sophomore year. "It's amazing," Vanderwagen said. "I've learned so much from the coaches and the players here want to win. This school has a winning culture... I love it."

Although transferring is usually a setback for most people, Vanderwagen did not let that get in his way of doing what he loves.

"I've been involved with football my whole life," Vanderwagen said. "It was the sport my parents put me in when I was young and I immediately fell in love."

Vanderwagen has many goals for this season: not only to be a part of a winning team, but also to be seen and known as a leader on this team.

"I strive to lead by example," Vanderwagen said. "I keep our defense going and our team spirit up by making a big play when it's needed."

Vanderwagen has been influenced by his brother his entire football career.

"I started by going to my brothers games when I was younger," Vanderwagen said.

He has been playing football since first grade, and is considering pursuing the sport in college.

Vanderwagen believes that football is a team sport and it takes the whole team to make each other better.

"One of the most helpful people on this team is Kevin Tebbe," Vanderwagen said. "He understands everything about the sport, and even helps me with my position."

The Sequoits have had a very successful season so far. Even after only a few weeks, the team has achieved many things, such as winning $10,000 during a 7-on 7-tournament.

"It was the first opportunity that we had as a team to put everything that we had been working for to the test," Vanderwagen said. "Plus the fact that winning the entire tournament was a huge confidence boost going into the regular season."

"I am a very competitive person," Vanderwagen said. "I am motivated on the field by my passion to win."
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Bridget Nauman
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Bridget Nauman

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