Over the summer, Antioch coach Brian Glashagel got married in Las Vegas to Sara Jowers, a fellow teacher at the school.
Honeymoon plans were pushed to this coming spring so that Glashagel could get back to work with his team in preparation for the season.
But while that particular honeymoon has not yet begun, the honeymoon on the football field has yet to end for Glashagel. And he's confident it won't any time soon.
Now in his fifth season, Glashagel has led the Sequoits to two playoff appearances and a winning record in all but his first season. And in 2008, Antioch made its deepest run ever into the playoffs by advancing all the way to the Class 6A semifinals.
The way Glashagel felt about that 2008 team is the way he feels about his current team.
"Going into a season, this is one of the better teams I've had in all of my years of coaching," said Glashagel, who includes his years as an assistant coach at Carmel and Wauconda. "I really, really like this team. We have a lot of pieces. I really think we're going to be a tough 5A opponent and that by the end of the season, if we stay healthy, no one is going to want to play us."
The Sequoits return only three starters on offense, but they are key starters. Plus, the seniors on the team, including first-year quarterback Josh Anttila, have had plenty of success in the past. They went 16-1-1 as freshmen and sophomores.
"I am always reminding them that (wins on underlevel teams) really don't matter that much," Glashagel said. "And they don't. But what that (past success) does do is give them confidence. We have a lot of guys, whether they're (returning) starters or not, who have a lot of confidence."
Anttila is technically one of the three starters back on offense. He started at wide receiver last year.
But quarterback is his natural position. He was the back-up last year and was the starting quarterback for those successful freshman and sophomore teams a couple of years ago.
"Josh is such a good athlete," Glashagel said. "We run the option and he's a great option quarterback because he's fast, he's smart and he makes great reads. He's a playmaker.
"The other thing I really like about Josh is his composure. There aren't a lot of highs and lows with him. He's very even-keel, very calm and collected. He's a very good leader on the field."
Returning to the offense along with Anttila are Dan Arden and Lee Shannon, who started last year at running back and on the line, respectively.
Arden rolled up nearly 700 rushing yards last season.
"He's bigger, stronger, smarter and even tougher than last year," Glashagel said of Arden. "In the triple option, the fullback is the main guy and Dan will be our fullback. He'll be getting the ball a lot."
Glashagel also expects senior running back George Gonzalez, junior tight end Cody Gwinn and wide receiver Anthony Formella to be important options in the offense as well.
Gonzalez will play both ways and anchor the defense. He's one of five returning starters on that side of the ball. He was an all-conference cornerback last year who had 3 interceptions and rolled up 47 tackles.
"We don't play a lot of guys both ways, but we'll play George three ways. He's also our kicker," Glashagel said with a laugh. "George is our Mr. Everything. He can kick and punt and we'll also have him run the ball on offense a little bit. And he's obviously very important to our defense."
Lineman Gregg VanDycke, who racked up 7 sacks in 2010, and Sam Emanuelson, a three-year starter on the line, and safety Sam Smith will share the defensive spotlight with Gonzalez.
Pos. Name Ht/Wt Yr.
QB Josh Anttila 6-0/184 Sr.
RB George Gonzalez 5-9/163 Sr.
RB Danny Arden 5-10/170 Sr.
RB Austin Klotter 5-9/162 Jr.
WR Anthony Formella 5-9/132 Jr.
TE Cody Gwinn 5-11/198 Jr.
OL Shannon Lee 6-0/215 Sr.
OL Gregg VanDycke 6-0/196 Sr.
OL Austin Vogel 6-6/282 Sr.
OL Mark Lyman 6-3/248 Jr.
OL Jacob Craft 5-11/234 Jr.
DL Gregg VanDycke 6-0/196 Sr.
DL Joey Lombardo 6-0/245 Sr.
DL Teddy Montemayor 5-8/196 Sr.
DL Sam Emanuelson 6-1/243 Sr.
LB Zack Epker 5-10/178 Sr.
LB Jack Johnson 6-1/232 Jr.
LB Zack Freundt 6-1/185 Sr.
DB Cameron Slate 5-6/130 Jr.
DB Stephen Smith 6-2/180 Sr.
DB Blake Harris 5-9/157 Sr.
DB George Gonzalez 5-9/163 Sr.