Daily News Q&A: Elizabeth Forward's Conor Hinchey
After a year away from the game, Conor Hinchey wanted to get back on the field when Elizabeth Forward replaced its coaching staff.
“I played when I was a sophomore, but I wasn't really a fan of the last coaching staff,” said Hinchey, a senior running back for the Warriors. “I don't regret that I didn't play, but I'm glad I'm back this year.”
It made it all the more sweeter Friday when Hinchey rushed for 209 yards and two touchdowns in Elizabeth Forward's 28-0 Class AAA Big 10 Conference victory at Albert Gallatin.
Fullback Zach Budde posted his second consecutive 100-yard rushing game to start the season, gaining 173 yards and scoring once for the Warriors.
First-year EF coach Mike Collodi, who was named in February to succeed Mike LeDonne, now an assistant at Gateway, likes Hinchey's tough-minded mentality.
“Conor is one of those guys I rely on for leadership,” Collodi said. “We don't have many seniors.”
Hinchey is “like a workout warrior,” Collodi said.
“I'm big into conditioning, and I really harped on it when I got here. Conor was there every day, lifting, working, getting stronger.”
Hinchey even dabbles in CrossFit workouts, setting up his basement to resemble a patented CrossFit box.
Q: Does anyone ever have difficulty pronouncing your last name?
A: Not so much anymore. I noticed it a lot when I was younger. I used to get HINE-she (the proper pronunciation is HIN-she).
Q: No matter how it's pronounced, it was announced quite a bit Friday night over the loud speakers. Have you ever rushed for 200 yards like that in a game before?
A: Never. This is the first year I've played running back. I used to be a fullback. I used to do the dirty work.
Q: How much did it mean to get that first victory for your new coach?
A: It meant a lot to get him his first win. The whole team, we just got behind him. We told him we're going to turn the program around, and that's what we're trying to do.
Q: What was the feeling you had when you scored that first touchdown Friday? It gave you an early lead in the first quarter.
A: I mean I was just glad to put my team ahead. I couldn't do it without the O-line. They were blowing kids away the whole game. I can't forget my fullbacks (Budde and Tyler Ocilka), either.
Q: With all the work you put in during the offseason, does it feel like the regular season is flying by already?
A: I almost forget Week 2 happened. It's going too quick.
Q: What is your favorite type of music, and do you have a favorite artist or group?
A: Probably rap. Migos is my favorite group.
Q: Where is the most interesting place you've visited.
A: Colorado for snowboarding two years ago. It was a good time.
Q: Do you have a role model in sports or perhaps just in life?
A: My favorite player is (Carolina Panthers quarterback) Cam Newton. I just like how he runs. He's not scared of anybody.
Dave Mackall is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com.