PEORIA, Illinois (WMBD) – To the newest team in Central Illinois, the Peoria Quest Academy Gators.

They will be starting as an 8-man program and were actually meant to play a JV schedule this season.

But when a separate 8-man school had to cancel its schedule, Quest was offered to take it over. The team consists of mostly underclassmen with a handful of juniors and will play all their games on the road.

Despite lots of obstacles, Peoria Quest is ready for a historic season.

By the time this group is juniors and seniors we want them to set the foundation for years to come for the kids coming up. Other than the long rides, some of my best memories from high school football are those long bus rides with my friends and my teammates.

Mauriece Coates, 1st-ever Peoria Quest Head Football Coach

We have high expectations to come into the season but it’s a first-year program so it might be a little hard. Keep your heads up, don’t doubt yourself when times get hard and play with a lot of heart

Terry Broadway, Peoria Quest Quarterback