The Herd Head into an Emotional Game Against Altoona while Keeping Playoff Hopes Alive


Kirsten Bisconer

The Herd storm the field prior to game against Governor Mifflin.

Bryce Wolaver, Staff Writer

Coming off of a huge road victory against CV, the Herd find themselves in playoff contention. Carlisle beat Cumberland Valley 26-20 on Friday, October 14th to secure their first win against the Eagles since 2004. It was also their first road win against CV since 1991. The Herd hope to ride this momentum into their final home game of the season. 

Carlisle welcomes conference opponent Altoona on Friday, October 21st at 7 p.m. in Ken Millen Stadium for their homecoming game. It will also be the last home game for the seniors. 

“It will be sad, especially since it’ll be senior night with my family,” Carlisle center Layton Schmick says. Schmick is a four-year starter at center and defensive line, and will be playing his final home game with the Herd against Altoona. 

Senior quarterback Louis Shank added that this “last home game [will be] a lot more personal.”

As is tradition, the seniors will walk with their families on the field prior to the game. The players who will be recognized include: Luke August, Matthew Bretz, Charles Dib, Dacoda Helm, Kareem Lawson, Theo Mazias, JaQueece Morell, Thomas Nelson, Louis Shank, Aubrey Smith, Dorian Stroud, Layton Schmick, Ezeekai Thomas, and Michael Thomas.

When asked how he plans to control the team’s emotions, Carlisle Coach Brett Ickes said “The sport itself is emotional…emotions are a big part of the game. We do our best to focus on what we can control.” 

Carlisle is heading into this game with a record of 4-4. The Herd kicked off their season with two dominant home wins against Mechanicsburg and Governor Mifflin, however the team has dealt with their fair share of problems. Multiple key injuries have occurred on both sides of the ball, making this season more challenging than anticipated.

Carlisle will have to focus on defending an Altoona team that is very run-heavy. The Mountain Lions average around 185 yards per game on the ground. The two teams tend to score around 20 points per game, so this game is expected to be a defensive, ground-and-pound battle. 

“Each and every game is very, very important,” Ickes said. “We try to take each week one at a time.” 

Regardless of the circumstances, this game is sure to be a treat for anyone attending. The emotions and excitement around this game should provide a much-needed spark for the home team. The Thundering Herd will look to finish their home season the same way they started it: with a win.