Mustangs senior quintet has Media Day visit to Highmark in preparation for title game Fri.

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 7 November 2023 at 1:16 pm

Photo by Cheryl Wertman – Getting a chance to spend a little time on the turf at Highmark Stadium this morning during Media Day was this quintet of Medina seniors. In front from left are Xavier King, Roosevelt Mitchell and Kaedon Cleveland as quarterback Julian Woodworth hands off to Noah Cudzilo.

Getting set for Medina’s second title game appearance at  Highmark Stadium in three years  the chance to visit the home of the Buffalo Bills this morning for Media Day marked the return to a very familiar place for Medina’s five senior player representatives.

“It’s great. It’s a dream being here again. It feels like home,” said two-way lineman Roosevelt Mitchell who along with his teammates two-way lineman Xavier King, quarterback Julian Woodworth, wide receiver Kaedon Cleveland and running back Noah Cudzilo were all sophomore members of the Mustangs 2021 team which defeated Fredonia in a snowstorm at Highmark for the Section VI Class C title.

The C North Division champion Mustangs will take on C South Division champ Salamanca at 1 p.m. Friday for the Section VI Class C title and a berth in the state playoffs.

“It’s been our team’s goal to get back,” said Cudzilo. “It’s amazing. It’s an honor to be able to play here.”

“It means everything,” said Woodworth. “Coming back is a great opportunity for us. The biggest thing is we have to execute.”

“We have to do what we do best,” added Mitchell.

All 10 sectional finalist teams were represented at the Media Day session. The championships will now have two games on Thursday and three on Friday beginning with the Medina vs. Salamanca contest.

It was also an interesting homecoming of sorts for one of Mustang head Coach Eric Valley’s assistant coaches.  The last time special teams  coach Mike Vanderjagt visited the stadium was with the Indianapolis Colts when he kicked the game winning field goal against the Bills.