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COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF: Biglerville Canners

RYAN VANDERSLOOT
505-5403/@yaiaascores
  • Biglerville shared the York-Adams Division III title a year ago with Hanover at 6-1.
  • The Canners finished at 8-4 overall in 2015.
  • Replacing standout quarterback Ben Hurda will be a key for Biglerville in 2016.

This is the seventh installment of our daily preview capsules leading up to the start of the York-Adams League high school football season on Friday, Sept. 2.  

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Who: Biglerville Canners.

2015 record: 8-4 overall, 6-1 York-Adams Division III.

Coach: Alex Ramos, seventh season.

Key returners (Division III All-Stars in bold): Dalton Cox, senior, offensive and defensive line; Brent Hayes, junior, offensive and defensive line; Nate Bowmaster, senior, offensive and defensive line; Reggie Adams, senior, running back/defensive back; Miles Hughes, junior, running back/defensive back; Hunter Getz, junior, running back/defensive back; Paul Asper, junior, offensive and defensive line; Jadon Stough, senior, tight-end/linebacker; Ivan Manzo, senior, running back/linebacker; Kam Wenk, senior, tight-end/defensive line; Chase Long, senior, wide receiver/defensive back; Chris Weaver, junior, running back/defensive back; Denton Showers, junior, wide receiver/defensive back.

Notable losses (Division III All-Stars in bold): Victor Lopez, offensive and defensive line; Scott Cooper, running back/defensive back; Ben Hurda, quarterback/linebacker; Colton Sentz, fullback/linebacker; Dayne Showers, running back/defensive back; Gage McAuliffe, wide receiver/defensive back; Nate Newberry, wide receiver/defensive back.

2016 schedule (Division III games in bold): Sept. 2 at Annville-Cleona (7 p.m.); Sept. 9 vs. Big Spring (7 p.m.); Sept. 16 vs. Susquehannock (7 p.m.); Sept. 23 at Fairfield (7 p.m.); Sept. 30 vs. York Tech (7 p.m.); Oct. 7 at Delone Catholic (7 p.m.); Oct. 14 vs. York Catholic (7 p.m.); Oct. 21 at Littlestown (7 p.m.); Oct. 28 at Hanover (7 p.m.); Nov. 4 vs. Bermudian Springs (7 p.m.)

Outlook:This year the Canners will look to build off a couple of successful seasons in 2014 and 2015. Biglerville shared the Division III title with Hanover a year ago after finishing 6-1 in the league.

This year’s team realizes there will be challenges awaiting them as a defending division champion. But the Biglerville players aren’t planning on living off last year’s success. They’ve pledged to forge their own identity.

Many of the other teams in the division return a sizable core from last season. While the Canners do have a group of key players back as well, they do have some question marks entering this season, especially at quarterback. Ben Hurda, who threw for 1,594 yards and nine touchdowns in 2015 as a senior, took nearly all of the snaps a season ago. Hurda’s graduation opens the door for a trio of players looking to replace him — senior Gabe May, junior Damian Manzo and sophomore Derek Tosten.

Whoever wins the QB competition will lead a team that features a blend of both size and skill. Many teams such as Biglerville, which will compete this season at the 3-A level, have either one or the other, but not both.

Coach speak:“We’re focused on moving forward, continuing to do what we’ve been doing and putting our best foot forward. I think we’re definitely headed in the right direction as a team.” — Ramos.

Reach Ryan Vandersloot at sports@yorkdispatch.com.