COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF: A preview look at the 2017 Susquehannock Warriors football team
- The Susquehannock Warriors are coming off a 3-7 season in 2016.
- The Warriors finished at 2-4 in York-Adams Division II.
- The Warriors lost their QB (Chase Summers) and their top rusher (Jack Allred) to graduation.
This is the 11th installment of our daily preview capsules leading up to the start of the York-Adams League high school football season.
Team: Susquehannock Warriors.
Coach: Steve Wiles (third season at Susquehannock, 18th season overall).
2016 record: 3-7 overall, 2-4 in York-Adams Division II.
Key losses (Division II All-Stars in bold): Jack Allred, fullback; Chase Summers, quarterback; Caleb Oestrike, guard/defensive end; Kerry Baum, inside linebacker; Adam Hedgeland, kicker; Andrew Senft, offensive tackle.
Key returners (Division II All-Stars in bold): Wyatt Hogan, offensive tackle/defensive tackle; Ben Trego, running back/defensive back; Alec Kramer, running back/linebacker; Chris Norris, split end/defensive back; Kyle Orndorff, running back/linebacker; Chase Bonitz, offensive line/defensive line; Ethan Schammel, tight end/defensive end.
2017 schedule (Division II games in bold): Sept. 1, vs. Northern (7 p.m.); Sept. 8, at York Catholic, (7 p.m.;) Sept. 15, vs. Biglerville (7 p.m.); Sept. 22, at Twin Valley, (7 p.m.); Sept. 29, vs. Gettysburg, (7 p.m.); Oct. 6, at York Suburban (7 p.m.); Oct. 13, at Eastern (7 p.m.); Oct. 20, West York (7 p.m.); Oct. 27, at Kennard-Dale, (7 p.m.); Nov. 3, Dover (7 p.m.).
Outlook: Five starters are back on both offense and defense for the Warriors who are aiming for a turnaround season.
"This is a pretty experienced group, a lot of players got playing time as sophomores," head coach Steve Wiles said.
Ethan Schammel is back after catching 18 passes for 376 yards (20.9 average) in 2016, and Wyatt Hogan is a veteran lineman on this year's team.
"I think we're going to have a really good season," Hogan said. "We learned that we're tired of losing. We lost a lot of close games (in 2016)."
The Warriors also lost to graduation their leading rusher, Jack Allred, and their starting quarterback, Chase Summers. Allred rushed for 1,303 yards (third-highest total in the York-Adams League), and Summers passed for 1,002 and six touchdowns. Those are major losses, for sure, but this year's group won't lower the bar: it has a winning season in its sights.
Quotable: "I think we can be a seven- or eight-win team. I've been playing with these guys since fourth grade, and it's kind of sad that it (the time) has gone so fast. But I think this is the year we can do it." — split end and defensive back Chris Norris.
Reach Dick VanO'Linda at firstname.lastname@example.org.