Oy, was it an ugly Week 1 last season for the Pioneer Athletic Conference.
All 10 teams fell in opening weekend contests. Perkiomen Valley came closest to coming out with a win, falling by two to a Brandon McIlwain-led Council Rock North team.
The good news?
This season, each PAC-10 team (except Methacton) will have a chance for redemption as all play the team that fell them the season before. Boyertown has a trip to Exeter, State College comes down to Royersford to face Spring-Ford with Perkiomen Valley traveling east to Council Rock North. Quakertown will face Tom Hontz’s squad at Upper Perkiomen with Conestoga once again traveling to face a new-look Owen J. Roberts squad in Rich Kolka’s debut at the helm. Cocalico will also travel over to Birdsboro as it looks to upend Daniel Boone like it did a season prior.
Saturday has more in store with Pottsgrove travelling to Simon Gratz to face Ben Franklin at 6:30 p.m., Bishop McDevitt giving Pope John Paul II a visit and the annual Route 29 series game with Phoenixville and Great Valley at 7 p.m.
Without further adieu, here’s a look at this week’s games:
Boyertown at Exeter, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: Boyertown 5-4 PAC-10, 5-5 overall; Exeter 5-1 Berks Section 1, 8-3 overall.
Last meeting: Exeter defeated Boyertown 28-0 last season.
Bears facts/figures: Senior quarterback Lawrence Garnett was solid at the tail end of last season but took his lumps against Exeter last season. Mike Banks will lead offensive line for the Bears.
Eagles facts/figures: Chase Yocum, who torched the Bears last season, is now at Shipppensburg. The 6-5, 273-pound defensive tackle in Michal Menet returns after being named All-State for the second straight year after making 71 tackles and 6.5 sacks. He’s committed to Penn State.
Notable: Exeter limited Boyertown to 11 yards of total offense in the first half last season. The Eagles also have a new helmet logo that rivals that of Oregon with a blue wing on a white finish.
State College at Spring-Ford, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: State College 3-4 Mid-Penn Commonwealth, 6-7 overall; Spring-Ford 7-2 PAC-10, 7-3 overall.
Last meeting: State College defeated Spring-Ford 34-20 last season.
Little Lions facts/figures: State College advanced to the PIAA-AAAA quarterfinals last season before falling to Pine-Richland. Quarterback Johnny Weakland graduated after throwing for 1,744 yards last season. Leading tailback Jordan Misher returns for his senior season after rushing for 1,539 yards.
Rams Facts/Figures: Ricky Venuto makes the start at quarterback for Spring-Ford in place of the graduated Brandon Leacraft. Stone Scarcelle will be a reliable target along with wideout Trey Jarmon. Matt Gibson will get bulk of carries with a line that returns Tim Rudderow.
Notable: Spring-Ford held two leads in last year’s loss to the Little Lions. … Misher ran for 226 yards on 26 carries in the win. … The Rams haven’t won a season opener since 2012 when they beat Whitehall.
Perkiomen Valley at Council Rock North, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: Perkiomen Valley 9-0 PAC-10, 9-2 overall; Council Rock North, 4-3 Suburban One Continental, 6-5 overall.
Last meeting: Council Rock North defeated Perkiomen Valley 29-27 last season
Indians Facts/Figures: Brandon McIlwain, the South Carolina commit, returns for his senior season. McIlwain threw for over 2,000 yards and 17 touchdowns and rushed for over 1,000 yards and 20 touchdowns last fall. Devon Bibbens (6-0, 180 pounds) and Tyler Nowmos (5-10, 180) are back for their senior seasons.
Vikings Facts/Figures: Stephen Sturm returns after leading the area in passing yards a season ago. He’ll be joined by David Williams and Ronnie Arch in the backfield with Justin Jaworski, Aaron Morton and Sean Owens his receivers. Vikings have lost majority of offensive line including Bloomsburg product Seth Jonassen.
Notable: Defensively, a battle is brewing for the nose tackle position at PV vacated by Collin Campanelli. It’s between Brandon Peck, a senior, and junior T.J. Ayrer. … The Vikings rallied from a 22-point halftime deficit in last year’s loss.
Quakertown at Upper Perkiomen, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: Quakertown 6-1 Suburban One Continental, 11-2 overall; Upper Perkiomen 4-5 PAC-10, 4-6 overall.
Last meeting: Quakertown defeated Upper Perkiomen 38-0 last season.
Panthers Facts/Figures: The Panthers offense features QB Tom Garlick, running backs Rob Burns and Nick Bonomo, and receivers Kyle Baskin and Aaron Besch, and lineman Gavin Caroff and are ranked in the Philadelphia Inquirer Top 25.
Indians Facts/Figures: The Indians return Mike Felix after he finished fourth in the area with 877 rushing yards on 115 carries in ‘14 while Ryan Kendra returns after a solid freshman season. Mahlon Schaffer is on track to return for Week 1 and will bring a senior presence to the offensive and defensive line.
Notable: Upper Perkiomen last won a season opener in 2010. The Indians have lost the last four to Quakertown in season openers.
Conestoga at Owen J. Roberts, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: Conestoga 6-3 Central League, 7-4 overall; Owen J. Roberts 3-6 league, 3-9 overall.
Last meeting: Conestoga defeated Owen J. Roberts 26-13 last season.
Pioneer Facts/Figures: Pioneers senior quarterback Tim Miller returns to the fold this season, as does fellow seniors Corey Manning and Daquan Perry, who will man the backfield.
Wildcats Facts/Figures: Rich Kolka’s debut comes in Bucktown as the Wildcats shift to a spread offense and a 3-3-5 stack on defense. Mitch Bradford is expected to start at quarterback. He, along with Dawson Stuart, should see their passing totals increase this year while Conor Mitchell will provide leadership to both sides of the ball.
Notable: The Wildcats’ last win against Conestoga came in 2009 when it won 13-3.
Pottstown at Sun Valley, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: Pottstown 1-8 PAC-10, 2-9 overall; Sun Valley 2-4 Ches-Mont American, 5-7 overall.
Last meeting: Sun Valley defeated Pottstown 34-14 last season.
Vanguards Facts/Figures: Charlie Wendling, a sophomore, has had a strong camp after moving to inside linebacker. Return starters Anthony Ruggiero (a two-way senior lineman) and Gabe Boccella (quarterback).
Trojans Facts/Figures: Pottstown sees the departure of Gary Wise but don’t lose athleticism with Brandon Tinson moving to the quarterback position. Jimmie Zazzi will be leader on the line with Bryant Wise expected to get a lot of touches in backfield.
Notable: Pottstown last won its season opener in 2010.
Norristown vs. Methacton, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: Norristown 2-5 Suburban One Continental, 4-7 overall; Methacton 7-2 PAC-10, 8-3 overall.
Last meeting: Methacton defeated Norristown 38-10 last season.
Eagles Facts/Figures: Eagles haven’t had a winning season since 2009 and fell to Methacton in the Warriors’ season finale.
Warriors Facts/Figures: Warriors lose a bevy of starters from last season’s run including 1,000-1,000 rusher/passer Conner Derrickson. Jason Eckman will be the quarterback with Dylan Feaster his primary target.
Notable: Methacton has a roster that hovers around 30 kids. … Warriors missed out on District 1-AAAA playoff appearance by one seed. … Game will be held at Phoenixville.
Cocalico at Daniel Boone, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: Cocalico 5-2 Lancaster-Lebanon Section 2, 10-4 overall; Daniel Boone 3-3 Berks Section 1, 8-5 overall.
Last meeting: Cocalico defeated Daniel Boone 32-14 last season.
Eagles Facts/Figures: Reigning District 3-AAA runner up. Offense finished with more than 4,000 rushing yards and 33 points a game last fall. Return Hunter High and Brandon Brubaker to triple-option attack.
Blazers Facts/Figures: Nick Hughes returns behind center for the Blazers while Cinque Ramsey will get a fair share of touches in the backfield.
Notable: Daniel Boone is 0-3 in its last three games against Cocalico.
Bishop McDevitt at Pope John Paul II, 1 p.m.
2014 Records: Bishop McDevitt 0-4 Catholic League, 3-7 overall; Pope John Paul II 1-8 PAC-10, 1-9 overall.
Last meeting: Bishop McDevitt beat PJP 33-14 last season.
Royal Lancers Facts/Figures: Bishop McDevitt returns quarterback Max Bryson and All-Catholic defensive end Nasir Pettus.
Golden Panthers Facts/Figures: PJP returns Matt Duff at quarterback and brings back reliable receiver Jared Johns-Lupold.
Notable: PJP held a one-point lead at the half before falling 33-14 in last season’s opener against McDevitt.
Pottsgrove at Ben Franklin, 6:30 p.m.
2014 Records: Pottsgrove 7-2 PAC-10, 8-4 overall; Ben Franklin 5-0 Public League, 11-1 overall.
Last meeting: Ben Franklin defeated Pottsgrove 41-7 last season.
Electrons Facts/Figures: Electrons’ lone loss came to St. Joseph’s Prep in the PIAA-AAAA playoffs. SJP went on to win the PIAA championship.
Falcons Facts/Figures: Deyon Doctor shifts to quarterback with Jake Adams spearheading an offensive line that should be close to dominant this season. Team must replace Devon Fink and Mike Fowler who graduated.
Notable: Kevin Caldwell, a 5-9, 190-pound senior, threw for 307 yards and four touchdowns, while Rafeal Rodriguez caught four passes for 154 yards and accounted for four scores as the Electrons dealt coach Rick Pennypacker’s squad its worst defeat in 12 years.
Phoenixville at Great Valley, 7 p.m.
2014 Records: Phoenixville 1-8 PAC-10, 1-9 overall; Great Valley 4-1 Ches-Mont American, 11-2 overall.
Last meeting: Great Valley defeated Phoenixville 54-0 last season.
Patriots Facts/Figures: Team lost 30 seniors from its 11-2 team and only return one starter on offense and four on defense. Nick Cionci will start at quarterback for the reigning District 1-AAA champion.
Phantoms Facts/Figures: Phantoms will start Troy Rossman at quarterback and will move Ian Brown to receiver with Matt Palubinsky at tight end.
Notable: The Phantoms are 2-4 against the Patriots in the last six seasons and have lost three straight contests.
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