Bulldogs Bite Back!


Caitlin Mark and Daylen Chapmen

The Lakeview football team has been caught up in a two year long losing streak, with last year’s season ending with a devastating 0-10. The 2021-22 season only showed the Bulldogs that there was more work to be done on and off the field.

The Lakeview Bulldogs had their first varsity non-conference game of the season on August 19th. Lakeview fans seemed to be piling in generously to see the team’s first kickoff against LaBrae.

The beginning of the night was intense, but after half-time the student section, cheerleaders, and crowd was full of excitement as the Bulldogs had been holding the lead for three quarters.

The student section had a great turn out for the first game. All grades ninth through twelfth could be seen supporting the Bulldogs decked out in beach wear.

Over the past few years student spirit has seemed to disappear from Lakeview with the lack of support during sporting events. Senior Maddie Bayus, plans to make a change this upcoming season with the 126 Club. Two out of the four student section leaders, Seniors Rocco Ferraro and Hayden Rozzo, were finally able to run with the touchdown flag during the game.

Ferraro, said, “We’re hoping to bring back the size of the student section to show our support this season.” 

Senior Damien Natali had an exciting first game scoring two out of the five touchdowns that night. Natali even won player of the game that week with having passed 42 yards and rushed 115 yards. Natali is this year’s quarterback and is doing amazing things for the team!

Other honorable players that game are Juniors Nolan Toth and Hayden Bartram. Toth also made two touchdowns that night and Bartram had a touchdown run within the last ten minutes taking the score to 34-0.

So far, the Bulldogs are off to a great start with three wins under their belt.

Lakeview went head to head against Garfield in week two and played a phenomenal game. The Bulldog’s defensive line did a great job holding off the G-Men resulting in a final score of 7-17. Unfortunately, that was Lakeview’s first lost of the season, but Lakeview Junior Sam Balest took player of the game having several key blocks on the offensive lines, some key tackles on the defensive line, and even a touchdown after a blocked punt.

On week three, Lakeview bounced back in their third non-conference game against Liberty. The Bulldogs defeated the Leopards 21-8 with Andrew McRoberts scoring one out of the three touchdowns. McRoberts won player of the game with his one receiving touchdown and an interception towards the end of the night for their Bulldogs to go home with their second win.

Last week the Bulldogs traveled into Dragon territory to play their first conference game this season. Last season Lakeview ranked in 8th our conference division, so the team was determined to revive themselves.

After defeating the Niles Red Dragons 21-13 head coach, Sam Bellino told local station WKBN, “It’s been awhile since we won a league game and that was a huge emphasis this week.” 

Bellino followed up with these words about his team, “The big thing for me is that they don’t care who does what, to a man they don’t care about stats. It’s a true brotherhood. They play for the guy lined up next to them. It’s all about teamwork. You’re never going to see one guy stand out in the stat sheet. That’s what’s beautiful about our program right now.” 

Natali, Toth, and Bartman all had a phenomenal night along with senior, Luke Canzonetta, who had a thrilling interception at the end of the fourth quarter sealing the win for the Bulldogs.

The boys were ecstatic to have won the Niles game especially since there was lots of doubt on Lakeview. Natali ended the night telling WKBN, It’s been a rough four years, and I really feel like we’ve now turned the corner and we’ve made a change,” and, “Man, my voice is gone, my excitement level is sky high. I just can’t express how great this feels.”

The Lakeview students, parents, and football team could not have asked for better start for a season. We wish the football team the best of luck and we hope to see you at Lakeview this Friday to play Girard at 7!