The slogan was plastered on the back of the neon orange shirts some of the Babylon football players wore before taking part in a 7-on-7 scrimmage at West Babylon middle school earlier this summer.
“Restore the Order” is the rallying cry of the Panthers following two down years by their standards. After two consecutive undefeated championship seasons, Babylon has gone a combined 9-9 the last two autumns.
“We have a lot of upperclassmen back at the skill positions and our chemistry has been great,” senior Jason Carlock said. “We’re really pumped to be getting ready for the start of the regular season.”
Last season, the Panthers finished 4-5 after a 35-8 loss to Bayport-Blue Point in the Suffolk Division IV quarterfinals. In their four wins, Babylon outscored opponents 149-0 but didn’t have nearly that same success against the division’s top teams.
“Two years ago we were on top and everybody knew us,” Carlock said. “We’re trying to get back to that because that’s what we can be. We can definitely be that good again.”
Much of that will be dependent on the play of Carlock and senior quarterback Scott Sasso. Carlock had 24 receptions for 319 yards and six touchdowns and Sasso ran for 390 yards and three touchdowns on 62 carries last year.
“I think we have great receivers and I’ve really been working on my throwing,” Sasso said. “Overall we will be better this year.”
The Panthers will get a chance to show off their improvements when they open their brand new field under the lights on Sept. 9 against Bayport-Blue Point.
“We’re all going to be pumped up, last year we lost to Bayport in the playoffs pretty badly,” Sasso said. “We’re going to be really amped up for that game.”
Babylon should know early on if they have re-established themselves among the elite of Division IV.
“We have high expectations — anything short of an LIC is unacceptable and that’s every year,” Carlock said. “We’re going to be pushing each other really hard this year.”