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Sports Article
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Bears Football Aiming to Improve on .500 Record
Written by Bradley Schlegel Correspondent

Boyertown football practices a running play during a recent morning practice. The Bears will face Upper Perk on their home turf Friday, Sept. 11 at 7 p.m.

                Despite returning only four starters, expectations remain high for Boyertown's football team. 

                "We've got a lot of young talented players, especially in the sophomore and junior classes" head coach George Parkinson said. "Our future looks pretty bright. I think we'll be real competitive."

                According to Mike Banks, a returning two-way starter listed at 6-foot-2, 300 pounds, the Bears should improve their 5-5 finish from last season. He said they could even contend for the Pioneer Athletic Conference title if everything goes right.

                "We have a lot of talent, more than last year" Banks said. "If we can come together as a team, we can be really good."

                According to Parkinson, the goal of winning a PAC-10 title should never be out of his players' minds. The coach said he would be disappointed if the team finishes below .500. He expects it to finish above .500.

                Banks and David Terry, a pair of seniors, will anchor the offensive and defensive lines. Their classmate, Lawrence Garnett, returns as the quarterback. Junior Hunter Vogels, a running back and safety, could be done for the year due to injuries he suffered in a recent car accident, according to Parkinson.

                The second year coach said the players' familiarity with his program should allow the Bears, who open their season Sept. 4 in a non-league game at Exeter, to overcome a relative lack of experience. 

                "That's the good news," Parkinson said.  According to the coach, senior Dan Heller and junior Chris Murray – both of whom received some playing time last season -- will start for Boyertown. Parkinson said Dan Heller will play running back and cornerback, while Murray will line up at cornerback.

                Three sophomores have earned a spot in the starting lineup. Jerry Kapp (wide receiver and cornerback) and Colin Black (offensive guard and middle linebacker) will play both ways, according to the coach. He said Marcus Thomas will play running back and possibly safety.

                Thanks to a plethora of talent, the team's spread offense should be more balanced than the previous season, according to Parkinson. He said last year, Garnett was the focus.

                "We've got weapons all over the place," the coach said. "I think all of our offensive players have above average speed, hands and quickness."

                According to Banks, the key to a successful offensive season depends on how quickly the offensive line can gel. Banks and Terry will anchor the unit, which includes senior guard Quinn Hare.

                "Coach Parkinson always stresses the fact that one guy out of 11 can mess up an entire play," Banks said.   Banks called Hare, who is playing football for the first time, a hard worker.

                "He's a strong kid," Banks said of Hare. "We just have to get him schooled up on the technique. If we can get it down, we have the talent to get the job done."

                According to Parkinson, Boyertown's defense is working hard to force more turnovers than it did last season. He said the unit remains more in flux than the offense.

                "We're still moving some people around on defense," the coach said. "There are some positions we see as weaknesses."







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