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Published August 26 2012

Area class 1A section 6 and 8 high school football Previews

Fertile-Beltrami

Coach: Brian Nelson (18th year)

2011 record: 8-3

Players to watch: Gunnar Giseold, Sr., RB/CB; Mitch Mosher, Jr., FB/LB; Charlie Duckstad, Jr., OL/DL.

Coach’s comments: “We only have one player back on offense and two on defense,” Nelson said. “We have some good skill position players and we have a lot of kids who saw some playing time last year. Hopefully we can fortify our offensive line and improve each week. We might be a totally different team at the end of the year.”

Schedule: Aug. 31–at Blackduck, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–Lake Park-Audubon, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–at Fosston, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–Cass Lake-Bena, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–at Warren-Alvarado-Oslo, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–Red Lake County, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–Mahnomen, 7 p.m.; Oct. 18–Frazee, at Fargodome, 1:15 p.m.

Lake Park-Audubon

Coach: Jed Swegarden (11th year)

2011 record: 7-3

Players to watch: Matt Pepper, Sr., OG/LB; Nate Renner, Sr., RB/LB; Dylan Larson, Sr., WR/S; Mason Swegarden, Jr., QB.

Coach’s comments: “I think our strength this year will be at the lineman positions,” Swegarden said. “We have a senior-orientated defense and we should be very good there this fall. One of our key goals is to have our younger players step up and fill some holes for us.”

Schedule: Aug. 31–Walker-Hackensack-Akeley, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–at Fertile-Beltrami, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–Frazee, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–at Fosston, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–at Red Lake County, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–Mahnomen, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–Warren-Alvarado-Oslo, 7 p.m.; Oct. 18–Pillager, at Fargodome, 1:30 p.m.

Mahnomen

Coach: John Clark Jr. (12th year)

2011 record: 13-1 (Minnesota Class A runner-up, lost to Dawson-Boyd in state championship game)

Players to watch: Jake Pavek, Sr., QB/DE; Jake Hedstrom, Sr., OL/DL; Nick Otto, Sr., OL/LB; Garret Hoffner, Sr., RB/QB.

Coach’s comments: “A lot of the guys got plenty of playing time last year,” Clark said of the Indians, who return six starters on offense and seven starters on defense. “We got a good mix of experienced players and younger players coming up looking for their opportunity to shine. There are a lot of athletes in those sophomore and junior classes that we will be relying on to fill in those holes. Our defense is going to be strong again this year. We have a lot of hard-nosed kids that like to hit and that is always a plus on defense.”

Schedule: Aug. 31–Pillager, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–at Frazee, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–at Walker-Hackensack-Akeley, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–Warren-Alvarado-Oslo, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–Fosston, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–at Lake Park-Audubon, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–at Fertile-Beltrami, 7 p.m.; Oct. 17–Red Lake County, 7 p.m.

New York Mills

Coach: Matt Radniecki (19th year)

2011 record: 1-8

Players to watch: Charlie Peeters, Sr., QB; Shane Novak, Sr., RB/S; Tyler Patron, Jr., RB/LB; Adam Patron, Jr., RB/LB.

Coach’s comments: “We have 10 returning starters on defense and nine on offense,” Radniecki said. “We are hopefully going to improve from last year with that experience coming back. The goal right now is to be more competitive and win the turnover battle during each game. We have more depth than we did last year and we are more mature. Our practices have been more competitive, which should help us on the field.”

Schedule: Aug. 30–at Upsala-Swanville, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–at Osaki, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–Royalton, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunberg, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–at West Central Area, 6 p.m.; Oct. 5–Ottertail Central, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–at Browerville, 7 p.m.; Oct. 18–Barnesville, at Fargodome, 3:30 p.m.

Ottertail Central

Coach: Don Seipkes (40th year)

2011 record: 5-4

Players to watch: Zach Torgerson, Sr., G/MLB; Tom Lachowitzer, Sr., FB/LB; Andrew Smith, Jr., QB/CB; Jake Trosdahl, Jr., RB/FS; Tyler Ukkelberg, Jr., G/DE.

Coach’s comments: “We’re not really big, but we’re fairly balanced along the offensive line,” Seipkes said. “We feel we are fairly athletic. We have to rely on that athleticism. I don’t know if we have a true strength. That remains to be seen as the season unfolds. I like the 11 that we are going to put on the field.”

Schedule: Aug. 30–United North Central, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–at Wadena-Deer Creek, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–Browerville, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–at Royalton, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunberg, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–at New York Mills, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–West Central Area, 7 p.m.; Oct. 17–at Long Prairie-Grey Eagle, 7 p.m.

West Central Area

Coach: Dave Drexler (third year)

2011 record: 2-7

Players to watch: Drew Peterson, Sr., WR/DB; Zach Fischer, Sr., FB/LB; Dakotah Kashmark, Jr., QB/DB; Alex Anderson, Sr., RB; Brady Combs, Jr., TE; Jared Oachs, Jr., OL.

Coach’s comments: “We lost a lot of seniors from last year’s team and we have been working on filling those positions,” Drexler said of the Knights who lost seven senior starters from the 2011 squad. “We have been getting back to the fundamentals. We are going to be a small team this fall, so we will have to be solid up front. We will be looking to get the ball into the hands of Dakotah (Kashmark) and Drew (Peterson) to make some plays.”

Schedule: Aug. 30–Wadena-Deer Creek, 7 p.m.; Sept. 7–Long Prairie-Grey Eagle, 7 p.m.; Sept. 14–at Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunberg, 7 p.m.; Sept. 21–at Browerville, 7 p.m.; Sept. 28–New York Mills, 7 p.m.; Oct. 5–Royalton, 7 p.m.; Oct. 12–at Ottertail Central, 7 p.m.; Oct. 17–at United North Central, 7 p.m.