COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF: A preview look at the Dallastown Wildcats
- Dallastown is coming off a 7-3 season in 2016, going 4-3 in Division I, but missed the playoffs.
- Kevin Myers is entering his 13th season with the team, the longest-tenured coach for one team in York County.
- Dallastown graduated six all-stars from its 2016 roster, but brings back two.
This is the 20th installment of our daily preview capsules leading up to the start of the York-Adams League high school football season.
►Who: Dallastown Wildcats.
►2016 record: 7-3 overall, 4-3 Division I.
►Coach: Kevin Myers, 13th season.
►Notable losses (Division I All-Stars in bold): Zion DeVance, senior, running back; Ben Ferree, senior, center; Drake Pew, senior, kicker/punter; Brice Register, senior, offensive/defensive line; John Brandon, senior, linebacker; Steven Dunczyk, senior, linebacker; Michael Sparks, senior, quarterback.
►Key returners (Division I All-Stars in bold): Jonah Miller, senior, offensive/defensive lineman; Max Teyral, senior, wide receiver/defensive back; William Anderson, senior, tight end/linebacker; Braden Caldwell, senior, wide receiver/defensive back; Yazir Dixon, senior, wide receiver/defensive back; Nate Downey, senior, wide receiver/linebacker; Ben Ward, senior, tight end/linebacker; Steven Werner, senior, tight end/defensive end.
►2017 schedule (Division I games in bold): Sept. 1 at Hempfield (7 p.m.); Sept. 8 vs. West York (7 p.m.); Sept. 15 at Penn Manor (7 p.m.); Sept. 22 vs. Spring Grove (7 p.m.); Sept. 29 at York High (7 p.m.); Oct. 6 vs. Northeastern (7 p.m.); Oct. 13 at South Western (7 p.m.); Oct. 20 vs. New Oxford (7 p.m.); Oct. 27 at Central York (7 p.m.); Nov. 3 vs. Red Lion (7 p.m.).
►Outlook: A season that ends after Week 10 isn't common around the Wildcat program, but 2016 was one of those rare instances.
With only eight teams making the District 3 Class 6-A playoffs after class expansion, Dallastown was on the outside looking in, despite having a 7-3 record. The Wildcats, who are usually in contention to win Division I, were just a middle-of-the-pack team last year, which was surprising after they went unbeaten in non-league play. The loss of a lot of talent from the 2015 team showed, with Dallastown struggling to contend with Division I foes that simply had more experience.
Regardless of how much the Wildcats lose to graduation, however, you can never count them out under the guidance of Kevin Myers. This year's team graduated six all-stars from 2016, but does bring back plenty of seniors who are vying to make their marks on the program in bigger roles.
Expect Dallastown to be in contention, as usual, and threaten to break into the district playoffs. A second consecutive year with no postseason is practically unheard of under Myers.
►Quotable: "We gotta play four quarters of football. When you look at our three losses, there's basically one quarter in each of those games where things fell apart a little bit or we let the other team run away with some things." — Kevin Myers
— Reach Patrick Strohecker at firstname.lastname@example.org