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Tiger Football Prepares For 2016 Season

Tiger coaches are ready for the 2016 season.
photo by Mike Cameron
Tiger coaches are ready for the 2016 season.

Monday September 5, 2016

By Mike Cameron

Right from the opening kick-off Middlebury Union High School Varsity Football 2016 will face two tough opponents both on the road.
    Week one will see the Tigers at Mount Anthony Union High School for a Friday Night, September 2nd battle with the Fighting Patriots of Coach John Martin and his staff.  The Pats let a short lead get away from them at Middlebury last year.  They are not afraid to spread out the defense with a wide open style of play.  Gone are the Pats Damon Burgess and Noah Normyle both quality skill players graduated. The Patriots are always more than a workout at Father Spinelli Field.
    The Tigers are coming off a good scrimmage against Otter Valley and Fair Haven.  Coach Dennis Smith is on the re-build and with graduation thinning the ranks he will be looking to build around his Senior QB Andrew Gleason after the signal caller had to step-up under very difficult circumstances last year.  Look for Trey Kaufmann and Spencer Carpenter to supply some fire-power out of the Tiger backfield.  Patrick Messenger and Maverick Payne both have varsity experience at center and tackle respectively.    
    Who will play will be determined a great deal by who demonstrates that they want to play, as many new faces will dot the Tiger line up in 2016.  To be sure, coaches Nuceder, Malcom and Gray will work in some new talent early this year and see what develops.  Expect them to learn quickly, because after all that's Tiger Football.
    After MAU at Bennington it's off to the Collins Pearley Sports Complex in Saint Albans for a Friday night on the road tilt with BFA Saint Albans.  Coach Geoff Murray's Bob Whites are always very competitive and almost defeated D-1 Champion Rutland at Rutland last year before running out of gas in the 4th quarter at Alumni Field.  They are paced by Senior Jordan Deso an excellent athlete on both sides of the ball.  Isaac and Luke Parent are also players to watch in this one.  Saint Albans is an excellent old-guard program, with a winning tradition.
    After two on the road, the Tigers will return to the Doc Collins Field here in Tiger Town for a game against the Colonels of Brattleboro.  By then we will have a good idea about the potential of this year's team.  The Colonels will also be a stern test.  Their first game of the season will be against always powerful Hartford when the Tigers are at Mt. Anthony.
    The rest of the season shapes up this way:  On successive Friday nights the Tigers will host Colchester, travel to So. Burlington, then up to Essex.  Finally it will be two games at home with Rice and CVU visiting Doc Collins on successive weekends.  The play-offs will follow and the State Championship Finals in all three divisions will be at Rutland again this year.  
    New faces, new accomplishments and a brand new football season is here.  We wish all of those who play this great game a safe season.


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