RIDGEFIELD PARK/LITTLE FERRY, N.J.– One of Detective Sam Aguilar's first moves as the Little Ferry Police Activities League's Football and Cheer director was to merge the Ridgefield Park and Little Ferry squads to build a feeder program for the next level.
"The expectation is for a successful merger for the future of these children," Aguilar said at a recent practice. "We're trying to keep kids [home]. It makes sense to keep them together for high school."
"We're hoping to be competitive too," added assistant coach Rick Tecchio of Ridgefield Park.
Sign-ups started in May and by the end of August, more than 200 children joined the four levels: Flag football/Baton (cheer), Peewee (3rd and 4th grade), Junior (5th and 6th grade) and Senior (7th and 8th grade), according to Aguilar.
"We're strong at every level," Tecchio said.
The Scarlet Devils – a combination of both town's mascots – will complete in the Bi-County Junior Scholastic Football League against Bogota, Cliffside Park, Englewood, Fort Lee, Ridgefield, Secaucus and Weehawken.
Home games will be played at the new Indian Lake field in Little Ferry. According to Aguilar, the borough is spending $2.5 million to have all the fields turfed.
To prepare the players for high school, the coaching staff is using the same terminology as the coaches at Ridgefield Park High School, Aguilar said.
The high school coaches had also joined summer recreation practices, he added.
The Scarlet Devils' season starts in Secaucus on Sept. 16.
Ridgefield Park formerly teamed with South Hackensack and competed in the Meadowlands Football League .
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