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Menasha on a mission this season

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Menasha has won or shared three of the last four Bay Conference titles. (WLUK)

MENASHA (WLUK) -- Since Menasha joined the Bay Conference in 2014 the Bluejays have won or shared three conference titles and have won 30 of 32 conference games.

So every year the Bluejays are at worse a favorite to win the league title and they are this year.

However, coach Jeramie Korth said his team is not entering this season with a goal to win a conference title.

"This team is more about talking about missions instead of goals and I think that the mindset they have is a little bit different from the past," he said. "Their goals or mission, I should say, is to be the best possible team they can be and work together and play for each other."

Whatever direction Korth points them in certainly will be the right one, based on the team's recent success.

Last year, Menasha shared the league title with West De Pere with 7-1 records after Menasha was surprised by New London at home. That loss is remembered and so is a Level 2 playoff double overtime loss to Hartford at home.

Menasha was a No. 2 seed and thought to be a threat for the state championship game but it didn't happen. Korth said that loss was cumulative, not just about that game.

"The difference was the little things that added up throughout the year," he said. "It wasn't really that one game."

Those games are in the past, but not forgotten. Menasha is focused on this season, which could be another good one as the offense looks dangerous.

The return of playmakers Riley Zirpel and Tyler Roehl could mean the Bluejays' offense is more dangerous than last year, when it averaged 31.6 points per game. Neither played a full season last year, so if they stay healhty in 2018, watch out.

Zirpel will be Menasha's top receiving threat after rushing for 506 yards last season and scoring eight touchdowns. Roehl will be the main ball carrier and added seven TDs and 490 rushing yards last season.

"I certainly think we have the weapons and the experience," Zirpel said. "Our offense was spectacular last year, but if we come together and gel together between our quarterback, running backs and the pass game, I think we should be very strong."

Menasha is primed for another big season and Zirpel knows his team will be a focus of opponents.

"Our hard work will pay off," he said. "As I said before, we have a target on our back because most of the time we perform, but I think if we all gel together, there is that target on our back. We just need to perform and come together on game day and what ever happens, happens."

And the plan is to make things happen.

Follow Doug Ritchay on Twitter @dougritchay

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