IWA opens season tonight

Published 10:13 pm Thursday, August 27, 2009

ISLE OF WIGHT – The Isle of Wight Academy football team reached the VISFA semifinals last year, and this year’s squad should be in the mix for another playoff spot.

Several of Isle of Wight’s skill players are back from last season. Daniel Brown, 6-foot-3, 190 pounds, returns at quarterback after a 1,000+ yard season through the air. He will also play defensive back.

Others who will contribute to the offense include receivers John Hibbard, Taylor Brown, and Brandon Privette and tight end Cody Bradshaw. Charles Keyt will see time at fullback.

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Much of the offensive line was lost to graduation. Expected to see extended playing time are Brent Wills at guard, Jason Duck at offensive line, Matt Hooker at offensive line, Brian Dietz at offensive line and Frank Ricks at center.

Head coach Dale Chapman said the Chargers will “run a multiple formation offense. We run a little bit of everything.”

Many of the same names on offense will also appear on the defensive side of the ball. Bradshaw, Dietz, Keyt, and Wills will play linebacker, Duck and Hooker will play on the defensive line.

Chapman said several players will roll in and out on defense besides the core group mentioned above. “The same thing as offense, we will show different looks on defense. We are not set in stone,” he said.

The Chargers have a markedly different schedule than last year. Included in the non-conference games are Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School and Hargrave Military the first two weeks of the season.

Isle of Wight had scheduled a game against Word of Life Christian of Washington, D.C., but the school discontinued its program. With Tidewater Academy also dropping off the schedule, IWA has just nine games scheduled.

Chapman said that Blessed Sacrament Huguenot will likely be the top competition in the Virginia Commonwealth Conference.

As for goals, Chapman said every year the Chargers go into the season with the expectation of playing in the postseason.

“The first thing we talk about in August is getting there. The former class puts pressure on the current class,” he said. “If we stay focused and keep from injuries, we could be in the postseason and that’s a goal they set for themselves.”