Wayne High School will honor these champions on Boom Night, Sept. 27 at 7 p.m., and at the Homecoming parade Friday, Sept. 28 at 3 p.m.
Senior members were: Richard Atcheson, Rick Brinkley, David Davis, Kevin Dodson, Jeff Douglas, Dave Greenlee, Tork Harmon, Pat Kelly, Rick Metzger, Charlie Reed, Dave Wetzel and all other team members will be introduced at 6:40 p.m. on game night at Epperly Field as the Falcons host the Grand View Christian Thunder in this years Homecoming.
Friday morning Aug. 18, 1978, as reported by the Times-Republican:
Let’s reminiscence at bit and let that fragrant smell of freshly bruised trodden turf and some high spirited expectations take over for a bit while all of us get a little younger. Can you feel it? Its Falcon football weather and it all began 40 years ago on a Friday morning Aug. 18, 1978, as 37 Falcons show up for pre-season conditioning. Jeff Douglas is limbering up with some stretching exercises while Kevin Dodson manhandles the blocking sled. Coach Paul Epperly is passing out practice uniforms. Let’s roll Falcons!
Falcons quick, experienced—Coach Paul Epperly is looking forward to his 12th season at the helm of the fighting Falcon warship that will rely heavily on team experience and speed—and prophesized, “Potentially this team may be the best we’ve ever had here at Wayne.”
Quarterback Dave Wetzel returns with 157 tries in the air last season.
Running back Dave Greenlee returns as an all-conference back that carried for 599 yards, had 5 touchdowns and averaged 7 yards per reception last season.
All-conference back Jeff Douglas returns, he scored 8 times last season.
All-conference end Dave Davis handled 21 passes and Tork Harmon will move up to tight-end. Harmon was an all-conference pick last season.
190 pound Kevin Dodson will bolster the Falcon attack as an all-conference tackle playing on both sides of the ball.
Coach Epperly expects hustle from junior receiver Mike Jennings, the leading 100 yard dash man in the conference. He states, “Brad Fetters and Dan Campbell have looked good in pre-season drills.”
Epperly, “We’ll go both ways on offense and defense early in the season and by mid-season I hope I can have 20 to 24 boys playing every game. Everyone’s attitude is good and pre-season conditioning is going very well.”
Falcons win opener, blast Clark 47-7.
Get a picture of sophomore halfback Chris Cahill working the end run as senior Jeff Douglas holds up a #1 to emphasize the Falcon outcome of this game?
Senior backs Dave Greenlee and Douglas combine for 6 touchdowns for their first victory in Osceola.
Falcon coach Epperly had expected a rugged confrontation, but swift play and execution paved the way for this Falcon victory. “I thought we controlled the line of scrimmage very well.”
Falcon record: whip Melcher-Dallas 55-0. Douglas scored twice in this game once running back a punt for 93 yards and paydirt to lead the Falcons to a record 55-0 win over the Melcher-Dallas Saints Friday night.
Greenlee, fleet senior running back, pushed the ball on three carries in for touchdowns and Street kicking the extra points.
Harmon grabbed a Wetzel pass for 12 yards and a touchdown.
Coach Paul Epperly was elated with the victory, “The defense played very well when the offence was down in the first quarter.”
Falcons roll, bomb Seymour, 66-0. Wayne amassed 462 yards against a meek 37 for Seymour as senior back Greenlee was called on 16 times and produced 85 yards on the ground. Falcon quarterback Wetzel uncorked a 34 yard pass to senior back Douglas for the first Wayne touchdown.
Wayne found themselves on the 3 after a 44 yard pass from Wetzel to Davis.
Coach Epperly was pleased with the victory, but unhappy with the sluggishness of the first quarter, “The boys have been up very well for 2 games, though I guess you can’t really expect them to be up 3 in a row.”
Douglas picked up 2 touchdowns on 14 carries—Dave Jennings picked up 21 yards.
Falcons remain unbeaten—Aerials beat Warren 13-6. The first quarter was an even matchup of undefeated teams.
As Wayne’s game plan did not sparkle by the end of the 2nd quarter, and everyone knows what Stanley said to Livingston, and the words of Neal Armstrong as he stepped on the moon, but only the coaches and players knew what 12 year veteran Coach Epperly said to the squad at halftime – but that impact came through loud and clear in the 3rd period, as the Falcons came out and played what only could be described as; inspired football.
Epperly, “I didn’t think we played with intensity the first half. We didn’t capitalize on our field position.”
Falcons win homecoming- Wayne drubs Moravia 42-7. Senior Douglas breaks collar bone and is out for the rest of the season.
The Falcon defense played with more intensity after the break to punch in runs of 8, 10, and 11 yards. Wetzel passed to Harmon for 36 yards to set up a Wetzel to Davis combination of 11 yards and a touchdown. Falcons picked up 241 yards running and went 9 for 16 aerially for 177 yards. According to Epperly, sophomore Dave Bruns will come up to replace Douglas.
Five touchdowns for Greenlee, Falcons slam Leon 58-12. Wetzel enjoyed one of his best nights totaling 167 yards on 11 of 15 completions.
“Oh sure this puts pressure on everyone,” said Epperly, “We know we have to play good ball and people expect it. We were rated 9th last week and the kids just expect it. The publicity hasn’t gone to their heads, I don’t think.”
Falcons clinch Bluegrass share; edge Mormon Trail, 16-6. Trail came into the contest with a 4-2 record and were prepared mentally, wearing ‘Beat Wayne’ belt banners. All that mental preparation failed as the injury ridden but stubborn Falcons hung on for a victory.
“I think it was a compliment to not play well and injured and to come back enough to win.” Said Coach Epperly.
Falcons beat Lamoni 46-0. Win the Bluegrass. Falcons now 8-0 on the season as young Wade Harmon, a 170 pounder, muscled his way to 51 yards on 7 carries while nabbing 2 passes for 14 yards in his opening varsity performance as a starter. The freshman said, “I was scared at first, but really liked it later.”
Epperly tried to hide his enthusiasm for the win, but was having a hard time doing it, “We played a pretty good game after the first quarter. Wetzel had a good night and the receivers had a good game.”
Falcons are playoff bound-Drub Mt. Ayr, 61-0. Coach Epperly’s Falcons finished the regular season at 9-0 with 400 points on the state playoff scale, tied with Greenfield.
Epperly, “We know they are tough and very good at fundamentals. They will be tough. I think we are going into the contest as underdogs, but we will have a good game.”
Tigers ground Falcons 35-16.
“It was a great honor to make it to the playoffs,” commented Falcon football Coach Epperly, “I’m very proud of the boys. There are going to be some very successful men out of this group.”
There will be a post game reception of the ‘78 teamates at the Corydon American Legion basement after the game and the public is invited to help in that celebration.