Coming off a 3-7 season, Pleasant Hill hopes for better luck in 2013 with six returning starters on both offense and defense.
By TOD PALMER
The Kansas City Star
“In high school, you just never know,” coach Kyle Roach said. “You hope so, but you never know. My goal going into every year is to be competitive and get the most out of the kids.”
Offensively, it starts for the Roosters with senior quarterback Josh Shewmaker and three senior offensive linemen — center Delainey Taala, left guard Brandon Clevenger and left tackle Johnny Berry.
Fullback Gage Neill and wide receiver Cole Miller are also back. Neill will be joined in the backfield by senior Brandon Cassity and junior Kolin Rogers. Seniors Micah Webber and Tyler Sanford are the wide receivers.
Senior tackle Jackson Voss also steps into a starting role with seniors Zach Neary and Brandon Senda competing for the other tackle spot.
Neill is among three returning starters at linebacker, who must provide leadership for the defense.
“That’s the most-experienced part of our defense, so I’m hoping it’s a strength,” Roach said.
Senior Kalen Cline and junior Kameron Gray also are back alongside Neill, while Taala returns to anchor the defensive line with seniors Cole Reeves and Tommy Moore.
“We hang our hat on the defense usually, so we hope they come together,” Roach said. “They better. Since we usually don’t have much speed, we have to limit the amount of big plays.”
Pleasant Hill must break in an all-new secondary, which now features Miller, Sanford and sophomore Levi Hayes.
“That worries me a little, but they’ve really done a nice job,” Roach said. “Obviously, without a lot of varsity experience, it makes you a little anxious.”