KFIZ’s High School Football Preview (Week 1)
By: Nick Van Nocker – KFIZ Sports
The High School Football Season is here and KFIZ Sports has you covered on all the area action. Make sure you join KFIZ Sports Director Chuck Freimund and the Voice of High School Football Nick Van Nocker for KFIZ Sportsnight at 5:30pm on Friday with interviews from all the area coaches and previews of the following matchups:
Sussex Hamilton at Fond du Lac – The Cardinals finished 5-5 under first year head coach Sam Plucker last season losing in the first round of the playoffs. They are poised to have a strong season with 15 returning starters. They will need to replace some skilled position players including startering quarterback, running back and wide receiver. Connor Klapperich will be back at quarterback this year. Connor was the starter his sophomore season, last year backing up senior starter Stephen Schreiter. Klapperich has taken big steps this offseason in leadership according to Coach Plucker and is ready to be the leader of the offense.
Senior Danner Dalske will getting a large portion of the carries out of the backfield for Fond du Lac this season. He was honorable mention all conference as a Junior. Also in the backfield for the Cardinals is fellow senior Jeremiah McGee who will also see a good deal of action.
Coach Plucker has high expectations of two way player Max Mengel. At 6-4, 245 the senior is a great route running top tight ends and one of the top players in the state. Mengal will also see action on the defensive side of the ball at defensive end.
Sussex Hamilton will be a tough opening matchup for Fond du Lac. They come out of the Greater Metro Conference where they won last year conference championship and made a deep run into the playoffs losing the state semi-final. They have 35 returning starters including 1st team all conference linebacker Ladianian Mielke.
Nick Van Nocker and 107.1’s Moose in the Morning will bring you the play by play action at 6:45pm on KFIZ.
St. Mary’s Spring Academy at Lake Country Lutheran – The Ledgers shutout Lake Country Lutheran in last years opening night at Fruth Field 27-0. Springs will be replacing some stop skilled positions players including quarterback, running back and wide receiver. Bob Hyland says the players that will get opportunities at these positions have had experience playing last season. The starting quarterback this season will be Max Bauer who will be leading a new offense. Coach Hyland’s team has been a running team for all of his 52 years as head coach. They will look to spread it out and mixing in more passing here in 2023.
Lake Country Lutheran is out of Metro Classic Conference with teams such as Racine St. Catherine’s, Brown Deer and Martin Luther. They returning there leading rusher Kylle Moore who rushed for 897 yards, 13 TD’s and was 1st team all conference. For the first time since joining the WIAA in 2008 Lake Country failed last year to win a playoff game.
WLA at Kettle Moraine Lutheran – WLA finished 4-5 last season 2-5 in the Flyway Conference. They return 8 starters on offense and 8 on defense. They have a strong leadership from their group of seniors. Same Loehr will be the starting QB for the Vikings heading into the season. WLA should see an improvement this year and could be a dark house to compete for a conference title. Kettle Moraine Lutheran is out of the East Central Wisconsin Conference with the likes of Ripon, Berlin and Waupun. They barely snuck into the playoffs last year with a league record of 3-4. KML is led by 3 year starting QB Landon Hagenow who threw for over 1100 yards last year and 10 TD’s.
North Fond du Lac at Blackhawk – North Fond du Lac has the states longest losing streak of 52 games dating back to August of 2016. They turn to new coach Taylan Ybarra for a fresh start. Coach Ybarra comes with some college coaching credentials at William Penn University in Iowa. Blackhawk/Warren, IL is out of the 6 Rivers Conference in southern Wisconsin. They are replacing 3 – 1,000 yard rushers who helped the team make the playoffs last year. They have some offensive line depth but replacing a lot of skilled position players.
Wautoma at Laconia – This will be a rematch of last years first round playoff matchup in which Laconia blew out Wautoma 42-0. Laconia lost there top two rushers from last year Wyatt Shaffer and Ashton Pike. Keeton Grade returns at QB this year for Laconia. Wautoma is out of the South Central Wisconsin Conference with the Wisconsin Dells, Mauston and Westfield. They were 4-6 last year which included there first playoff birth since 2018. Wautoma should take a step up this year with 9 returning starters on both sides of the balls.
Green Bay West at Campbellsport – Campbellsport finished just behind Springs and Mayville last year in the Flyway Conference. They return 7 starters on offense and 7 on defense. The skill positions on offense has some depth with some players having 2-3 years of experience. They return top rusher Ben Timme who carried the ball 234 times for just over 1,900 yards and 23 TD’s last year. Green Bay West is out of the FRCC South Conference with Notre Dame, Menasha and the Sheboygan schools. They did not win a game in 2022.
Lomira at Horicon – Lomira was 2-7 last year but looks to improve with 5 returning starters on offense and 4 on defense. They are led by dual threat QB Connor Steers who led the team in both passing and rushing last year. Horicon out of the Eastern Suburban Conference with the likes of Markesan, Marshall and Dodgeland was 3-6 in the regular season last year. The barely snuck into the playoffs. They return starting quarterback Carter Schwartz and running back Issac Howards.
Oakfield does not start 8 man football until next week.
Find all the scores on Saturday Morning at www.kfiz.com