FOOTBALL: Week 1 area previews
SHIPPENSBURG AT DOVER
Game data: Shippensburg will unveil its new offense in its season opener on Friday at 7, looking to start the season on a better note than last year. Dover handed the Greyhounds a lopsided defeat last season, taking a 34-13 victory.
The Hounds have moved away from the wing-T offense and will transition to a more versatile look that features more shotgun and passing. Senior Tyler Gustafson will lead Shippensburg, which finished 5-5 last season, and he will have a pair of dangerous receiving weapons in Wade Mills and brother Cody Gustafson.
Defensively, Ship still has plenty of question marks, but it also returns playmakers, including Cameron Tinner, Nathaniel Sheffield, Dylan Rotz and Mills.
Dover is making a similar offensive transition as Shippensburg, moving from the wing-T to the spread. Senior quarterback Tyler Blazosky returns to lead the offense, as well as junior Durran Ledbetter, who finished with 700 yards on the ground last season. The Eagles are looking to improve on a 5-5 season last year in which the team was ravaged with injuries.
Media: Follow Colin Snyder, @Corb17402, on Twitter.
HANOVER AT JAMES BUCHANAN
Game data: James Buchanan will look to get off to a fast start when it hosts Hanover on Friday at 7.
The Rockets, who finished 3-7 last year, have a lot of questions on both sides of the ball. Offensively, Dillon Sanders returns under center and Seth Carbaugh will be back in the backfield, but JB will have to find a way to replace the standout play of Peter Hughey and Shamar Pates.
Defensively, James Buchanan loses tackling machine Blake Egolf, and it also returns just one player from last year's back seven. The defensive line figures to be a strength with Zane Bray, Judson Iverson and Dustin Walker all returning. JB beat Hanover 33-19 last season.
The Nighthawks have been on a stretch of losing seasons, and it won't get any easier after losing wide receiver Dylan Kreiger, who finished with 78 catches for 1,279 yards last season. Hanover, which finished 2-8 last season, does return quarterback Kyle Krout, who finished with 1,886 yards passing last season, and Jordan Laughman will return in the backfield after an injury last year.
Defensively, Hanover has several questions in the defensive secondary that returns just one starter. Nate Klunk and Aaron Bowman will anchor the defensive line.
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KENNARD-DALE AT WAYNESBORO
Game data: Waynesboro is looking to open up the season in a similar way as it did last season when it kicks things off at 7 on Friday.
The Indians, who finished with a 6-4 record last year, opened up with a 53-7 thrashing of Kennard-Dale. This year, Waynesboro has some fresh faces, but still has plenty of the same expectations.
Brady Riddell will take over for Connor Fetterhoff under center, and Jake Wertz will take the reigns in the backfield for Justin Marion. Matt Peck returns as the No. 1 receiver after piling up over 1,000 yards last season, and Charlie Patterson should also be a solid pass-catching option.
Defensively, the Indians return several playmakers, including Brandon Baer, Forrest Rhyne and Trevor Biller. Waynesboro will do a lot of shuffling in the secondary to try to keep its two-way players fresh.
The Rams are totally revamping after a 1-9 campaign last season. Kennard-Dale is going backward, trading in a spread offense for the wing-T, and it is also shifting its defense to a 3-3-5.
Offensively, Danny Brewer and Dalton Stike will compete at quarterback, and fullback Chase Carlile should be a focal point in the run game.
Defensively, Quincy Noland will anchor the line after finishing with 22 tackles and three sacks last season. The secondary should be the Rams' biggest strength with three returners.
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