Kingman football works to take the next step in the CKL
2011 senior Mikabe Erdman looks for daylight as Skyler Goyen blocks for him. (Photo courtesy of the Kingman Leader-Courier)
Coach: Curtis Albin (2nd year at Kingman, 9th year head coach, 2-7 at Kingman, 35-34 overall)
2011 Recap: 2-7 overall, 1-3 in CKL South, 1-2 in District.
The Eagles started the year with a win over Haven in Week 1, and started district play with a 1-point win over Chaparral. But good starts to each portion of the season didn’t lead to more wins.
Returning Starters: Offensive 7, Defensive 7
Returning Lettermen: 12
2012 District: Garden Plain, Haven, Hutchinson Trinity
Kingman graduated three-year starting quarterback Mikabe Erdman, and will need to find a replacement. Vying for the spot at the helm of the Eagles’ offense are Mitchell Packard, Alex Swain, and Parker Maloney. Packard is a junior who brings a solid JV season last year to the table, while Swain is a senior with experience. Maloney is a sophomore who may be looking to get some experience under his belt for the years ahead.
Whoever gets the starting job at quarterback will have some help with a group of returning players. Fullback Zach Andersen returns as a junior after garnering All-League Honorable Mention status last season as a sophomore. Andersen racked up 384 yards with 3 touchdowns last season, averaging 5.26 yards per carry. Braxton Bangert returns as a junior as well after a promising sophomore season. With minimal touches, Bangert made the most of his opportunities with 163 yards on a 5.09 yards per carry average. Senior Austin Massey makes it three running backs with varsity experience. Ryan Leroux is a senior who can step in and carry the ball as well.
The Eagles also have a pair of returning juniors on the offense line in Ryan Boroughs and Nathan Wilson. Nick Meng is a returning senior at tight end who can provide an offensive threat as well. Last season, Meng had 2 touchdowns on 10 catches and averaged 13.8 yards per catch. Kingman has a number of juniors who can step in on the on the offensive line. Austin Taylor is back after missing last season due to a car accident. Tanner Kerchen is also a returning junior, along with Alex Fairchild and Ryan Ybarra. Jordan Campbell is a sophomore offensive lineman looking for time.
Brandon Bradshaw gives Kingman a big play threat in the passing game. Last season as a freshman, Bradshaw showed flashes of a promising career. He caught just two passes, but made them count, averaging 29 yards per catch.
The Kingman defense is led by junior linebacker Ryan Boroughs. Last season, Boroughs had a big sophomore year, leading the team in tackles with 81, intercepted a pass, recovered three fumbles, and earned First-Team All-League honors. Boroughs has plenty of help around him at the linebacker position, with senior Austin Massey, and junior Zach Andersen. Andersen was the third leading tackler last year with 50 and intercepted two passes and forced a fumble. Massey also intercepted a pass last season.
On the defensive line, senior Eric Crowe returns up front, but will need some people to step up in order to control the line of scrimmage. On the outside, Drew Trollope will give the Eagles a senior at defensive end. Junior Tyler Beat and sophomore Jordan Campbell are also options at defensive end. Kingman has a number of juniors who can step in on the interior as well. Ryan Ybarra, Alex Fairchild, Austin Taylor, and Tanner Kerchen are all juniors on a potentially deep line of scrimmage.
In the secondary, the Eagles have a couple of returning starters to anchor the unit. Senior Nick Meng and sophomore Brandon Bradshaw bring continuity. Last season, Meng intercepted two passes and picked up 28 tackles. Bradshaw picked up 8 tackles in his sophomore season. Senior Ryan Leroux, junior Mitchell Packard, and sophomore Parker Maloney can fill in the spots in the secondary for Kingman.
Odds and Ends:
Kingman’s first two years in the CKL have provided four wins. But that is four more wins than the Eagles picked up in their last two seasons in the AVCTL. The program is looking to reach another level on the way back to prominence, and has the capability to do so. Kingman’s players have made tremendous strides in the weight room this summer. On top of increasing the team’s strength and quickness, the Eagles work this summer shows a dedication to turn things around.
Albin was forced to play a bunch of sophomores last season. There were some growing pains as a result. The Eagles are hoping putting such a young team on the field will pay off in varsity experience over the next two seasons.