CAPITAL DISTRICT Here is a look at the Burnt Hills, Mohonasen and Scotia-Glenville football teams as they prepare for this weekend's season openers:
Burnt Hills Spartans
Head coach: Matt Shell
Key veterans: Jack Guba (RB/DB), Dylan Wydronkowski (RB/LB), Mark Fialkowski (RB/LB), Nicholas Crocetto (OL/DL), Kyle Olson (OL.DE)
Key losses: Keaton Flint (QB), Evan Nussbaum (RB/DB/K), Corey Parks (WR/DE), Brandon Beatty (RB/DB), William Fisher (RB/LB), Jake Batty (OL/DL)
Outlook: The Spartans are going through a reloading phase after reaching the state semifinals for the third consecutive year, and Shell said the team will have to meet the challenges that go along with being the target for every other Section II team.
“We have to be at our best each week,” said Shell. “We have to improve, and we have to make the plays when we have the opportunity to do so.”
Mohonasen Mighty Warriors
Head coach: Dennis Corbitt
Key veterans: Killian Tallman (QB), CJ Stone (RB), Nick Bateman (RB), Zach Collins (OL), Kyle Ragule (RB/LB), Jake Ritz (LB/TE), Jaha Waymer (WR/CB)
Key newcomers: Trevon Tucker (RB/CB), Spencer Tedford (OL/DL), Ryan Corbitt (OL/DL), Eric Pierone (QB/LB), Romello Ellis (OL/DL)
Outlook: Corbitt said he believes the Mighty Warriors will surprise people this season. “This group has been working extremely hard in the offseason to get ready for this year,” he said. “We have talent along with experience to help our younger players make the adjustmemt to varsity football.”
Head coach: Kevin Warren
Key veterans: John DiPace (LB/OT), Ryan Damarche (TB/OLB), Zack Jerard (WR/CB), Henry Pacheco (DE/TB), Andy Tabbert (WR)
Key losses: Kyle Cullihan, Ryan Reed, GT Salamone
Outlook: Warren is hoping to change the culture at Scotia this season. “We haven’t had a winning season in 11 years, so the team dynamic is something that we’ve been working on,” he said.