FARGO — The Fargo Davies football team is preparing to soar to familiar heights in 2019.
After finishing with their first winning season in four years (7-4), there's plenty of optimism in the Eagles camp.
Their campaign came to an end in the Class AAA state semifinals, where the Eagles fell to the eventual champions Bismarck High.
The team's run-game proved to be rewarding in the past, and head coach Jason Thielges believes it's not worth fixing if it's not broken.
"We've always been a run-first, play-action football team, that's been our philosophy," he said. "That never goes bad on you when it's wet, windy, rainy or snowy, so that's something we try and lean on. "
Thielges returns 12 starters, and after the Eagles graduated quarterback Jesse Forknell, junior Reid Hartness is the man calling the plays.
He was a safety in 2018, and feels his experience on both sides of the ball could be advantageous.
"I know how to read the defense pretty well now," said Hartness. "It's great to now be able to play both sides."
The Eagles will rely on their talisman Ty Satter, who led the EDC in receiving yards with 621 and receptions with 30.
The wide receiver will play for North Dakota State in 2020, but is laser-focused on a strong finish to his high school career.
"I'm still going to go out there and give it one hundred percent, and do it for my teammates at Davies," he said. "We want to go far, and in North Dakota especially, there are no days off."
Coach Thielges has his sights set on the EDC crown first and foremost, and hopes it can catapult the team to a deep postseason run.
"If you can get the one-seed for the playoffs and get those two home games, that's huge," he said. "So that's our goal right now - win the conference championship, and go from there."
The Eagles open the year at home against 2018 state tournament runner-up Bismarck Century on August 30.