GCL Coed football preview: Alter, CJ to debut new starting QBs

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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Highlights of the Knights 13-0 win over the Rams.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Season begins Friday with three matchups between 2019 playoff teams

Chaminade Julienne coach Marcus Colvin felt a change with his team when Gov. Mike DeWine allowed football teams across Ohio to proceed with their season last week. He told them that after practice Monday.

“I thought our kids did a great job all summer showing up, not really understanding what they’re preparing for but staying the course,” Colvin said. “To finally get the green light and for our school give us the approval, it was like the energy is a little different now. Kids are a little more excited. Coaches are a little more into it. It’s real. We’ve got a big game on Friday.”

The Eagles start the season against Harrison at Roger Glass Stadium in Dayton. It’s a matchup of two 2019 playoff teams.

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In fact, all three Greater Catholic League Coed teams that made the playoffs last fall start the season Friday against 2019 playoff teams. Alter plays at Clinton Massie. Badin plays at Ross in the opener. It will be the fourth straight season they have played in the first game.

Carroll plays at Talawanda in its opener, while Fenwick plays a home game against Edgewood.

Those will be the only non-conference games for each team in the six-game season. GCL Coed teams will start a five-game conference schedule in Week 2. Here’s a glance at each of the local teams in the division. Teams are listed in order of last year’s finish.

Chaminade Julienne

The Eagles finished 8-3 last season, losing to Bishop Hartley and Alter in the regular season and to Alter in the first-round of the playoffs. They tied with Badin atop the league with a 4-1 record.

This will be the ninth season as head coach for Colvin, who has led the program to the playoffs four times. The Eagles lost their starting quarterback, Ryan Minor, as well as their leading rusher, Quincy Johnson Jr., to graduation.

“We lost a lot — some irreplaceables, 21 seniors — and most of those kids played for us,” Colvin said. “To say we’re young is an understatement. After this season, for the next two years, we’ve got a chance to be OK. We’ll play quite a bit of sophomores this year, and even some freshmen will get some playing time.”

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Junior Luke Chandler will take over as the starting quarterback. He got extensive playing time as a freshman in the second half of the 2018 season and even started the playoff game against Fenwick that season. Minor had to sit out the last five games of the 2018 regular season plus the playoff game because he was a transfer from Stebbins and could play only in the first five games.

Chandler appeared in two games last season as a backup to Minor.

“It’s his turn now,” Colvin said. “He’s really done a great job.”

The other top returners for CJ include: junior wide receiver Kenyon Owens, who led the team with 61 catches for 742 yards and six touchdowns; Jason Ward, a four-year starter who plays defensive back and wide receiver; senior linebacker David Frederick, a two-time All-GCL selection and one of the top wrestlers in the state at 170 pounds.

The Eagles scrimmaged New Bremen on Saturday. Hutch Konerman, of WDTN-TV in Dayton, was on the sideline and told Colvin his team looked big.

“I was like, ‘They are,‘” Colvin said. “We are big. We do have size. But they’re all 14. It’s just getting those guys ready. I think we’ll have our hands full with everyone we play, but I also think that we can play with just about everybody we play. I don’t know about that Alter team. They’re pretty special right now. But I don’t think we’re just going to go into a game — even being as young as we — and not have a chance. We’re going to have a chance, but we’re definitely not the team we were last year.”

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Badin's football season ends with a 13-0 loss to Alter in their Division III regional semifinal game Friday, Nov. 9 at Barnitz Stadium in Middletown. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Badin's football season ends with a 13-0 loss to Alter in their Division III regional semifinal game Friday, Nov. 9 at Barnitz Stadium in Middletown. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

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Badin's football season ends with a 13-0 loss to Alter in their Division III regional semifinal game Friday, Nov. 9 at Barnitz Stadium in Middletown. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Badin

The Rams started 0-2 last season but won their last three regular-season games to reach the postseason for the second straight year. They beat Ross and Alter in the playoffs before losing 20-7 to eventual state champion Trotwood-Madison. Their 9-4 record was the program’s best since a 10-3 finish in 2013.

Badin scrimmaged Mount Healthy last weekend. Fourth-year coach Nick Yordy said it went well and everyone stayed healthy, which was the most important thing. He expects defense to be the team’s strength this season because they return more players on that side of the ball.

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The new quarterback is junior Landyn Vidourek, who takes over after the graduation of Zack Switzer.

“He’s an athletic kid, a really good baseball player,” Yordy said. “He can throw the ball well but also can run it pretty well. He’s really stepped into this role pretty nice for a younger guy with no experience.”

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Fenwick was defeated by St. Francis DeSales 42-22 at their football game Friday, Sept. 27 at Bishop Fenwick High School. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Fenwick was defeated by St. Francis DeSales 42-22 at their football game Friday, Sept. 27 at Bishop Fenwick High School. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

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Fenwick was defeated by St. Francis DeSales 42-22 at their football game Friday, Sept. 27 at Bishop Fenwick High School. NICK GRAHAM/STAFF

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Fenwick

The Falcons finished 5-5 overall last season and placed third in the division at 3-2. George Moore, a longtime Fenwick assistant who was elevated to head coach in January, said this year’s team has a 50-50 mix of returning starters and new starters.

Fenwick scrimmaged Monroe last week and lost 22-7.

“We were able to get in a lot of kids,” Moore said, “and see what they can do and test out our offense and see what works for us and what doesn’t.”

Senor quarterback Braden Listerman returns for a second year as a starter after throwing eight touchdown passes last season. Junior running back Colt Bradshaw, who ran for 11 touchdowns last season, also returns.

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Alter High School sophomore C.J. Hicks makes a short gain during a scrimmage at Beavercreek on Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019. MARC PENDLETON / STAFF

Alter High School sophomore C.J. Hicks makes a short gain during a scrimmage at Beavercreek on Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019. MARC PENDLETON / STAFF

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Alter High School sophomore C.J. Hicks makes a short gain during a scrimmage at Beavercreek on Saturday, Aug. 17, 2019. MARC PENDLETON / STAFF

Alter

The Knights finished 7-5 overall last season and 2-3 in the league, reaching the playoffs for the 19th straight season.

“I think if the offense line comes around and the defense shows improvement and we do well in special teams, I think we’re gonna have a very good year,” coach Ed Domsitz said. “We pretty much say that every year about Alter.”

Many eyes will be on junior C.J. Hicks, who committed to Ohio State in May.

“Offensively, he’s picking things up very quickly,” Domsitz said. “It looks like he’s going to get some work at running back, and we’re going to play him at inside or outside linebacker on defense.”

Alter, which scrimmaged Lakota East last week, has a new quarterback: senior Brian Shane, who played tight end last season and led the team with 15 catches for 231 yards. Shane also saw time as the backup quarterback behind Kale Steneman.

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“He played last year some when Kale was hurt,” Domsitz said. “He started one ballgame and came in at least one other, so it’s not like it’s his first time under the lights. Plus he has experience as a tight end in some big games where he made some big catches.”

One key returner on offense is senior running back Branden McDonald, who has rushed for 2,592 yards the last two seasons. McDonald has a chance to break Doug Penno’s school record for career rushing yards (3,289)

“Branden’s slimmed down a little bit,” Domsitz said. “I think he’s a little bit quicker than what he has been in the past, and he was pretty quick in the past. Watching him run the other night, he’s still explosive. He’s a load to bring down.”

Other key returners are senior lineman James Keighley; senior linebacker Nolan Meyer; senior defensive back Aidan Plate; senior defensive lineman Braden Koller; senior lineman Matt See; senior wide receiver Patrick Connor; and senior running back and receiver Seth Morris.

Carroll

The Patriots finished 4-6 overall and 2-3 in the conference last season. It was the first season as head coach for Cody Byrd, who was promoted after two seasons as an assistant coach.

Byrd said Carroll scrimmaged Edgewood last week and ironed out some question marks.

“We are a younger team than we were last year,” Byrd said. “Athletically, we’re pretty solid. We’ve got some great athletes. We’ve got some size. While we do lose a lot in the senior class, we lose probably more leadership than anything.”

Carroll graduated quarterback Trent Fox, who led the division with 2,129 passing yards has a new starter: sophomore Ryan Chapman. His brother Steven Chapman led the conference last season as a junior with 738 receiving yards.

“Bringing Chapman back and having his brother throwing him the ball, that’s a pretty cool year for the kids,” Byrd said.

Among the other key returners are: senior captains Ethan Braun, a safety and wide receiver, Andy Walker, a middle linebacker, and Cole Ryan, an offensive and defensive lineman; and senior wide receiver Sam Severt.

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