“I didn’t expect our team to be ranked in the polls,” Milton head coach Howie DeCristofaro said. “We were hoping to win a few games.”
The Eagles (5-0, 2-0) have achieved this goal and beyond, earning wins over Alpharetta, Johns Creek, Centennial, Roswell and a 38-9 triumph over Wheeler last Friday.
In the Wheeler victory, running back Micco Brisker rushed for 111 yards, replacing All-State candidate and Tennessee-commit Treyvon Paulk who missed the game due to injury. Quarterback Austin McLeod had three touchdown passes in the win.
“Our running backs like Micco have stepped up and shown the depth of the position,” DeCristofaro said. “The players don’t care about getting individual credit. They just want to win.”
While the offense has continued its torrid pace of averaging a Region 5-AAAAAA high 42 points per contest, the defense, which had to replace the No. 1-raded defensive end of the country, current Auburn Tiger Carl Lawson, has been just as sturdy, giving up only 11 points a game.
“We have good coaching and players who’ve been in our defensive system for years,” DeCristofaro said. “They understand the fundamentals and know what they’re doing.”
Milton’s biggest test of the season will come this Friday when undefeated Etowah (5-0, 2-0) comes to town for early supremacy of the region. The Eagles though are working on internal improvements to prepare for external challenges.
“We’re focused on cutting our penalties down, continuing to have low turnovers and work on the fundamentals,” DeCristofaro said. “It’s good to be two games up in the region and we want to control our own destiny to make the postseason.”
The strong start represents the continued building of the program that DeCristofaro took over four years ago. “We had to get the players to buy into being great by lifting, training and watching film,” DeCristofaro said. “We’re preparing these young men for college and it feels good to improve the program. We’re continuing to get better.”