The West Portsmouth Tanks’ semi-professional football team began its inaugural season in 2016. Well, sort of. After transitioning from the now defunct Portsmouth Warriors, the 2016 season brought with it a 7-5 record, a playoff win, a Division Championship, and a finish as a Blue Collar Football League (BCFL) Eastern Conference Runner-Up.
Well, sort of. After transitioning from the now defunct Portsmouth Warriors, the 2016 season brought with it a 7-5 record, a playoff win, a Division Championship, and a finish as BCFL Eastern Conference Runner-Up.
After transitioning from the now defunct Portsmouth Warriors, the 2016 season brought with it a 7-5 record, a playoff win, a Division Championship, and a finish as the BCFL Eastern Conference Runner-Up.
To many teams, this would have been considered a successful season.
However, the Tanks coaching staff and many of the players had just finished winning a 2015 NFE AA Semi-Pro National Championship a few months prior in Daytona Beach, Florida with the Portsmouth Warriors. So, to the same group who had only lost 5 games in the previous 4 seasons, 2016 was not on par with the standard which had been set.
So, to the same group who had only lost five games in the previous four seasons, 2016 was not on par with the standard which had been set. However, going into the upcoming 2017 Semi-Pro football season, the Tanks believe they are once again a national title contender and the premier minor league football organization in Southern Ohio.
“There are so many things that need to be done to transition from one team to another,” West Portsmouth head coach Jamie Rice said. From an organizational standpoint, we started up a new team in 2016 even though the staff and a lot of the players were the same, a lot of the behind the scenes stuff needed to be brought together. We believe things have settled, and this year, we will realize our potential. We like our football team, and we like the direction we are on and the leadership we are seeing.”
The Tanks looked very sharp in their first scrimmage of the season, where West Portsmouth hosted the Jackson County Patriots in a format that consisted of 10 offensive and 10 defensive plays apiece. The Tanks surrendered no touchdowns in the five frames while scoring six times.
“We believe that Jackson County is a very fine football team,” Tanks’ defensive coordinator Brian Wroten said. “They should contend for their league championship. We like our execution and physicality at this point in the season and hope to build upon that as the regular season approaches.
Fortunately, the good people at the West Portsmouth Youth Complex made the transition much easier.
“They welcomed us with open arms at the Complex and we’ve been very fortunate to have what I believe is a one of a kind relationship between semi-pro football and this facility,” Wroten said. “Personally, I’m a lifelong “West Sider” so I know the passion for football in this community. I want everyone in the community to feel a sense of ownership in this team as we start our journey to bring a championship to West Portsmouth this season.”The West Portsmouth Tanks will
The West Portsmouth Tanks will kick off their regular season on Saturday against the newly formed Wheelersburg Buccaneers’ football team, which extends the natural rivalry between the communities to semiprofessional football. Kickoff is set for 5 p.m. and gates open up at 4 p.m. at the West Portsmouth Youth Complex at 1420 13th Street in West Portsmouth.