Sonora Post-game Thoughts with Ripon High Quarterback Nico Ilardi

Staff Reports

After an exciting 55-14 defeat of Sonora on our own turf, Smoke Signal News Journalist Lilly Crew took a few moments to speak to Quarterback Nico Ilardi regarding the game.

Ilardi’s biggest highlight of the game was a catch by teammate, Dorian Dougherty. When asked about the highlight, he responded,  “Probably Dorian’s one-handed catch. I threw it and I really didn’t think he was going to catch it, and then he caught it, and we all just went crazy!”

When asked how he feels about being quarterback this year, Ilardi said, “It’s fun to be back under center – I mean, I’ve played quarterback since I was in 6th grade, and so I had one year like a little break there, but I’m more comfortable there.”

In regard to what Ilardi looks forward to most this season, he stated he’s looking forward to continuing to improve.  “We’ve seen what we can do these first two weeks and we know what we have, and I think we could potentially be really good,” Ilardi stated.

Crew asked Ilardi how he keeps confidence in himself and his teammates throughout the game. Ilardi answered, “We just try to stay positive with each other – always picking each other up, like when a bad play happens not yelling at one another because that just tears each other down and we just want to stay positive with one another.”

As for Ilardi’s biggest fear coming into the Sonora game, he said, “Sonora’s usually a pretty good team and they always put up a good fight… run-stopping isn’t usually our forte but we held them pretty well.”

Being a senior at Ripon High this year definitely has made an impression on our quarterback. “You kind of realize a lot of ‘this is my last year’. We’ve already played two games and I only have 8 games guaranteed left, so you kind of try to do the things you wish the people before you would have done, and basically be a role model for the younger people – the underclassmen.”