COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF: A preview look at the 2017 York Tech Spartans football team
- The York Tech Spartans were 4-6 overall last season and 2-5 in York-Adams Division III.
- Terence Romey is a returning York-Adams Division III All-Star for the Spartans.
- Charlie Troxell is back for his second straight season as York Tech's head coach.
This is the third installment of our daily preview capsules leading up to the start of the York-Adams League high school football season.
Who: York Tech Spartans.
2016 record: 4-6 overall, 2-5 York-Adams Division III.
Coach: Charlie Troxell, second season.
Key returners (2016 Division III All-Stars in bold): Noah Burns, offensive tackle/defensive end; Tavon Williams, fullback/defensive end; Julio Pascual, quarterback/receiver/defensive back; James Yillafanna, tight end/linebacker; Tony Bermudez, offensive guard/defensive tackle; Tyler Enfield, linebacker; Eric Clark, split end/free safety; Terence Romey, wideout/defensive back.
Notable losses (2016 Division III All-Stars in bold): Jordan Ray, split end; Josiah Smallwood, quarterback; Chris Martin, offensive guard/defensive tacke; Zach Hagarman, offensive tackle/defensive end.
2017 schedule (Division III games in bold): Sept. 2, vs. Harford, Md. Tech (1 p.m.); Sept. 8, at Eastern (7 p.m.); Sept. 16, vs. Kennard-Dale, (1 p.m.); Sept. 22, at Littlestown, (7 p.m); Sept. 30, vs. Biglerville, (1 p.m); Oct. 6, at Bermudian Springs, (7 p.m); Oct. 14, vs. Fairfield, (10 a.m); Oct. 20, at Hanover, (7 p.m); Oct. 27, at Delone Catholic, (7 p.m); Nov. 4, vs. York Catholic, (1:30 p.m).
Outlook: The Spartans just missed a .500 record last year, posting their best overall mark in seven seasons. Troxell thinks this year's team has the potential to again compete with both division and non-division foes.
"I believe the foundation we set last year has been working really well, with a great nucleus of last year's players (on this year's team) and the addition of some quality players from last year's freshmen squad," Troxell said. "Some of the people who played for us last year were very inexperienced. They're all back this year."
Tavon Williams, a senior, is looking forward to running behind Spartans' line.
"This is one of the best and strongest lines I've seen," said Williams, who's in his fourth year with the program. "Last year, that was a huge stepping stone for us, and we're looking to keep it going this year."
Among the players who aren't back this year is Jordan Ray, who put together a sensational senior season at wideout. Ray averaged a sparkling 27.1 yards a catch with 27 receptions for 731 yards, finishing second in the league in receiving yards.
In addition, the player who threw the ball to Ray, Josiah Smallwood, transferred to York High. Smallwood was second in the league in passing yards during 2016 at 1,454.
Ray and Smallwood will be missed, but the Spartans will still seek to build on last year's success.
Coach speak: "Last year was a new era for Spartan football," Troxell said. "This year, our goal is to continue the new era."
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at email@example.com.