The Nanaimo District Islanders envision a new game plan this year – no more “three yards in a cloud of dust,” said the coach.
“I think the days of 14-7 ND wins are going to be up to 38-36 ND wins this year…” said Nate Stevenson. “I think we’re going to see a lot of [shootouts] this year, which ought to be good for the people who enjoy grey hairs.”
Nanaimo District Secondary School’s AA varsity Islanders don’t have a ton of size this year, but they have speed and skill.
“So we’re trying to hang our hat on that, use our advantages and get to the point of attack quick,” Stevenson said.
Running backs include Jérémie Cheng, Thomas Eytcheson and Brennan Mattes. Quarterback Cole McGarvey is an accurate passer who will be able to connect with receivers Tyus Barfoot, Malik Besseghieur and Brett Ablitt. Offensive lineman McIntyre Barrera is team captain.
Cheng, Eytcheson and Mattes will be key on the defensive side of the ball, too, comprising the linebacking corps.
NDSS plays in a tough conference. They start with a road game against the top-five-ranked Carson Graham Eagles this Friday (Sept. 20) and will also have to try to match up with teams like Ballenas, Windsor and Barsby.
“We know we’ve got some bears in front of us,” said Stevenson. “You don’t want to look forward but there’s that schedule hanging by your desk and you can’t help to peek. We’ve got to have solid games every week if we’re going to have a shot at this thing.”