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Class C North football preview capsules, schedules

Akron Tigers (4-4)

Coach: Andrew Clouse, fifth season.

Home field: Unnamed.

Program founded: Unknown.

Outlook: The Tigers are coming off their third consecutive playoff appearance following back-to-back 4-4 season. Dual-threat QB Brandon Orr has graduated, but they return five starters on offense and seven on defense. Junior Adam Mietz moves from running back to quarterback. Should he drop back to pass, senior Nick Wood could make an ideal target at wide receiver as he shifts from running back. Sophomore Aidan Smith returns and is set to play running back/safety. Junior David Kalinowski is a 6-1, 200-pound linebacker/guard who is in pursuit of the school record for career tackles (229). He had 81 in his first season.


Sept. 6 Silver Creek, 7 p.m.

Sept. 13 at Timon-St. Jude, 7 p.m.

Sept. 19 Cleveland Hill, 6 p.m.

Sept. 27 at Wilson 7 p.m.

Oct. 4 JFK, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 11 Medina, 7 p.m.

Oct. 18 at Roy-Hart, 7 p.m.


Cleveland Hill Golden Eagles (10-2)

Coach: Glen Graham, 17th season.

Home field: Carl J. Kuras Field.

Program founded: 1953.

Outlook: After consecutive trips to the state semifinals, the three-time defending Section VI champions only return five starters on offense and defense. That said, the Golden Eagles still appear to be the team to beat. Senior running back/linebacker Chris Diem returns for his third season and should be the latest power back with speed who burns foes. He averaged 7.9 yards per carry while playing behind graduated All-WNYers Aaron Wahler and Javon Thomas – who combined for nearly 3,500 of the team’s 4,487 rushing yards. Senior Alex Rojeck is 6-5, 275 and a potential Trench Trophy candidate. He was the team's top lineman last year. Senior Jayden Krueger should be the team's best interior lineman.


Sept. 7 Maryvale, 2 p.m.

Sept. 13 at Roy-Hart, 7 p.m.

Sept. 19 at Akron, 6 p.m.

Sept. 28 Silver Creek, 2 p.m.

Oct. 4 at Wilson, 7 p.m.

Oct. 12 at Clymer/Sherman/Panama (at Panama), 1:30 p.m.

Oct. 19 John F. Kennedy, 2 p.m.


John F. Kennedy Bears (2-7)

Coach: Jeff Sabatino, fifth season.

Home field: Unnamed.

Program founded: 1931.

Outlook: The Bears feature a veteran team looking to return to the postseason after failing to qualify last year. Jax Lighten returns at quarterback and is a threat to make plays with his arm (seven touchdowns) or legs (eight TDs, 5.0 yards per carry). Junior Santino Aramini averaged 6.5 yards per carry last year and scored seven TDs. Seniors Da’Rell Dabney and Curtis Flakes return to anchor the line. “We feel we can be competitive and make a playoff run,” Sabatino said.


Sept. 7 Catt./Little Valley, 1:30 p.m.

Sept. 14 Wison, 1:30 p.m.

Sept. 21 Silver Creek, 1:30 p.m.

Sept. 27 at Franklinville/Ellicottville, 7 p.m.

Oct. 4 at Akron, 7 p.m.

Oct. 12 Roy-Hart, 1:30 p.m.

Oct. 19 at Cleveland Hill,  2 p.m.


Roy-Hart Rams (0-7)

Coach: Marcus Wyche, second season.

Home field: Bruno Pacini Field.

Program founded: Unknown.

Outlook: The goal for Year Two of the Wyche era, "is to continue to strive to get better," he said. Looking to help make that happen is senior Mike Huntington, a standout linebacker who will add quarterback duties. Senior Noah Draper returns to handle fullback and defensive end roles. Senior Ed Hahn will be a big anchor in the middle as a two-way lineman, as will 6-3, 260-pound classmate Jacob Palmer. Senior Nikki Joe Arendt and sophomore Jordan Terwilliger should get the bulk of the work at running back.


Sept. 6 Wilson, 7 p.m.

Sept. 13 Cleveland Hill, 7 p.m.

Sept. 20 at Alden, 7 p.m.

Sept. 27 East Aurora/Holland, 7 p.m.

Oct. 4 at Silver Creek, 7 p.m.

Oct. 12 at JFK, 1:30 p.m.

Oct. 18 Akron 7 p.m.


Silver Creek/Forestville Black Knights (2-6)

Coach: Sean Helmer, 14th season.

Home field: Unnamed.

Program founded: Circa 1928.

Outlook: The Black Knights return roughly 15 players, but quarterback Austin Rott isn’t among them. He has transferred to Southwestern, so Dom Jamison takes over at QB. Key returnees include senior two-way linemen Chandler Eggleston and Max Caccamese and senior running back/linebacker Angel Carraballo. Expect good things from sophomore running back/linebacker Hunter Larson and junior wide receiver/defensive back Sam Braidich.


Sept. 6 at Akron, 7 p.m.

Sept. 14 Clymer/Sherman/Panama, 7 p.m.

Sept. 21 at JFK, 1:30 p.m.

Sept. 28 at Cleveland Hill, 2 p.m.

Oct. 4 Roy-Hart, 7 p.m.

Oct. 11 Wilson, 7 p.m.

Oct. 18 Catt./Little Valley, 7 p.m.


Wilson Lakemen (7-2)

Coach: Bill Atlas, 13th season.

Home field: Hutchinson Field.

Program founded: 1946.

Outlook: The Lakemen return eight starters on each side of the ball from a team that, for a second consecutive season, came within a conversion of making it to New Era Field. With record-setting signal-caller Steve Frerichs graduated, senior Bobby Atlas moves from receiver. Fellow seniors who look to keep Wilson’s offense humming include running backs Drew Westmoreland and Brayden Dunlap, tight end Declan Faery and receiver Marc Dolyk.


Sept. 6 at Roy-Hart, 7 p.m.

Sept. 14 at JFK, 1:30 p.m.

Sept. 20 Timon-St. Jude, 7 p.m.

Sept. 27 Akron, 7 p.m.

Oct. 4 Cleveland Hill, 7 p.m.

Oct. 11 at Silver Creek, 7 p.m.

Oct. 18 Newfane, 7 p.m.

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