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Published August 26 2012

Class 2A Minnesota preview football capsules


Coach: Bryan Strand (eighth year)

2011 record: 9-1

Players to watch: Austin Martz, Sr., RB/SS; Michael Strand, Jr., RB/C; Kyler Martz, Jr., QB/FS; Jonah Kletsch, Jr., C/DT; Willie Anderson, Sr., T/DT.

Coach’s comments: “We have outstanding speed and an overall good strength among the entire team that spent the time in the weight room and look to be physically in pretty good shape,” said Strand. “We do lack depth in certain positions, which may become an issue. Our conference has some good teams in it and we will be challenged during many of our games. I believe we have enough back from last year to compete for another conference championship.”

Schedule: Aug. 31–Browerville, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunberg, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–at Wadena-Deer Creek, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–at Upsala-Swanville, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–United North Central, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–at Long Prairie-Grey Eagle, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–Osakis, 7 p.m.; Oct. 18–New York Mills, at Fargodome, 3:30 p.m.;


Coach: Chad Fredericksen (fifth year)

2011 record: 5-4

Players to watch: Michael Whitney, Sr., RB; Nate Blothes, Soph., QB/LB; Connor Yaggie, Jr., QB/DB; Derek Nordick, Sr., OL/DL; Aaron Neppl, Jr., WR/DB; Parker Busse, Jr., RB/LB.

Coach’s comments: “We hope to improve this fall,” Fredericksen said. “We are a really young team with 21 of 22 starters that graduated last year. Hopefully, by the end of the season, we can be a team that can make a run. We have a lot of talent in our junior class and we will be trying to get them experience and an understanding of what we do.”

Schedule: Aug. 31–at Wahpeton, N.D., 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–Pelican Rapids, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–Roseau, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–at Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–Crookston, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–Hawley, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–at Warroad, 6 p.m.; Oct. 18–Staples-Motley, at Fargodome, 8 p.m.;


Coach: Jim Rader (sixth year)

2011 record: 4-5

Players to watch: Baxter Bachmann, Sr., QB/DB; Tyler Ziegler, Sr., LB; Garrett Malstrom, Soph., OL/LB.

Coach’s comments: “We’ve got good numbers and a large senior class this year,” Rader said. “Our expectation is to compete every week and make a run at the end. We had a good game against Warroad in the playoffs last season and gave them a battle. No one wants to end the season on a loss, but every team other than the champions do.”

Schedule: Aug. 31–at Bagley, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–Mahnomen, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–at Lake Park-Audubon, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–at Red Lake County, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–Pine River-Backus, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–at Warren-Alvarado-Oslo, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–Fosston, 7 p.m.; Oct. 18–Fertile-Beltrami, at Fargodome, 1:15 p.m.


Coach: Peder Naatz (13th year)

2011 record: 10-1

Players to watch: Alex Ames, Sr., RB/LB; Ben Ellefson, Sr., QB/LB; Chris Buttke, Sr., FB/LB; Logan Stoa, Sr., OL/DE.

Coach’s comments: “The outlook is positive,” Naatz said. “We will be very green, especially on the offensive and defensive line. As always, we need to stay healthy and be lucky once in a while to have everything fall into place. If we do the work and preparation in the offseason, we should be able to give everyone a good game.”

Schedule: Aug. 31–at Park Rapids, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–Staples-Motley, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–Pelican Rapids, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–at Roseau, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–at Breckenridge, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–Pequot Lakes, 7 p.m.; Oct. 17–at Warroad, 7 p.m.;

Pelican Rapids

Coach: Dave Haugen (16th year)

2011 record: 3-6

Players to watch: Tucker Forsgren, Sr., SE/OLB; Devin Schell, Sr., QB/FS; Ian Johnson, Sr., OL/DL; Marshall Ohe, Sr., OL/LB.

Coach’s comments: “Optimism is real high heading into the season,” Haugen said. “I like the looks of our team and what we can do both offensively and defensively giving us a chance for a lot of success this year. We have some good skill players and with some returning linemen it should give us a good mix of being able to pass and run.”

Schedule: Aug. 31–Perham, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–at Breckenridge, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–at Hawley, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–Warroad, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–Staples-Motley, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–at East Grand Forks, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–Roseau, 7 p.m.; Oct. 17–at Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton, 7 p.m.;

Wadena-Deer Creek

Coach: Howie Kangas (first year)

2011 record: 0-9

Players to watch: Jake Krause, Sr., RB/LB; Evan VanErp, Sr., QB/DB; Mike Paavola, Sr., OL/LB.

Coach’s comments: “I would like to think my biggest surprise this year is that our offensive line is pretty decent. They’ve all played before,” Kangas said. “We aren’t worried about anything in specific other than getting better. The only thing we are really focused on is getting better each and every day.”

Schedule: Aug. 30–at West Central Area, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–Ottertail Central, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–Barnesville, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–at Long Prairie-Grey Eagle, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–at Osakis, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–United North Central, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–at Upsala-Swanville, 7 p.m.; Oct. 17–Royalton, 7 p.m.