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2022 Team Preview: Ephrata Mountaineers (3)

Written by: on Sunday, August 14th, 2022. Follow David Mika on Twitter.

 

Head Coach: Kris Miller

Assistant Coaches:
Clint Surgeoner
Jeremy Franck
Josh Clair
Cam Niemeyer
Dr. Lenny Harding
Jason Vollertsen
Kyle Gesswein
Pat Ross

Team Name: Ephrata Mountaineers

2021 Record: 5-5

Stadium: War Memorial Field

District: District 3

Class: AAAAA

League: Lancaster-Lebanon League, Section 3

Key Starters Lost:
Anthony Stidham, H-Back, Second Team LL Section III Offensive athlete
Hunter Mortimer, QB/FS
Elijah Knowles, WR/DB, Team Captain
Kyle Emrey, WR/DB/KR
Devon Litten, RB/P, LL Section III Honorable Mention Punter
Jaydin Mabry, FS
Marquise Greer, DE
James Ellis, C/DE
Frank Riggs, OT
Deric Hoover, OT/DT, LL Section III 1st Team DE, LL Section III 2nd Team OT, PA Coaches Select All-State 2nd Team DT
Ben Slider, G
Cole Sieger, G/DT, LL Section III 2nd Team OG

Offensive Starters Returning: (8)
Sam McCracken, Jr, QB/FS, LL Section III Honorable Mention QB
Jeremiah Knowles, Jr., WR/DB/Returner, LL Section III 1st Team DB/WR/KR , LL Section III Wide Receiver of the Year, PA Coaches Select All-State Kick Returner
Cole Freeman, Sr., TE/DE
Quintin Pfautz, Jr., TE/LB
Andre Weidman, Sr., RB/LB, LL Section III 1st Team RB, LL Section III Offensive Back of the Year, LL Section III Co-Outstanding Back of the Year, LL Section III 2nd Team DB, PA Coaches Select All-State 2nd Team Defensive Athlete, 5A All-EasternPAFootball.com honorable mention RB
MacGyver Balmer, Jr., G
Weston Nolt, Sr., OT/DT
Evan Boley, Sr., WR/DB

Defensive Starters Returning: (9)
Sam McCracken, Jr, QB/FS, LL Section III Honorable Mention QB
Jeremiah Knowles, Jr., WR/DB/Returner, LL Section III 1st Team DB/WR/KR , LL Section III Wide Receiver of the Year, PA Coaches Select All-State Kick Returner
Cole Freeman, Sr., TE/DE
Quintin Pfautz, Jr., TE/LB
Andre Weidman, Sr., RB/LB, LL Section III 1st Team RB, LL Section III Offensive Back of the Year, LL Section III Co-Outstanding Back of the Year, LL Section III 2nd Team DB, PA Coaches Select All-State 2nd Team Defensive Athlete, 5A All-EasternPAFootball.com honorable mention RB
Travis Martin, Sr., LB, LL Section III 2nd Team OLB
Seth Heinsey, Sr., LB, LL Section III Honorable Mention ILB
Weston Nolt, Sr., OT/DT
Evan Boley, Sr., WR/DB

Special Team Starters Returning: (2)
Chad Jones Sr K
Weston Nolt S P

Key Newcomers:
Jackson Nolt OL/DL
Brayden Brown RB/LB
Nate Conover WR/DB
Nick Keller WR/DB
Caleb Grant QB/DB

2021 Returning Player Stats:
Sam McCracken
Offense:
Passing:
44 of 101 passes
678 yards
8 touchdowns
5 interceptions
Defense:
11 solo tackles
16 total tackles

Jeremiah Knowles
Offense:
Receiving:
25 catches
609 yards
6 touchdowns
Defense:
54 solo tackles
84 total tackles
3 interceptions
2.5 sacks
2 PD

Cole Freeman
Offense:
Receiving:
2 catches
36 yards
Defense:
24 solo tackles
53 total tackles
13 TFL
6.5 sacks
3 PD
3 caused fumbles
2 hurries

Quintin Pfautz
Defense:
35 solo tackles
82 total tackles
10 TFL
5 hurries
3 sacks
1 PD
1 caused fumble

Andre Weidman
Offense:
Rushing:
214 carries
1,430 yards
18 touchdowns
Receiving:
8 catches
70 yards
Defense:
46 solo tackles
75 total tackles
4 TFL
1.5 sacks
1 interception
1 PD
1 caused fumble

MacGyver Balmer
Defense:
4 solo tackles
9 total tackles

Weston Nolt
Defense:
17 solo tackles
26 total tackles
12.5 TFL
4 hurries
3.5 sacks
2 caused fumbles
1 PD

Evan Boley
Offense:
Receiving:
9 catches
190 yards
1 touchdown
Defense:
11 solo tackles
19 total tackles
1 TFL
1 sack
1 PD
1 caused fumble

Travis Martin
Defense:
48 solo tackles
91 total tackles
8.5 TFL
4 hurries
2 sacks
1 PD

Seth Heinsey, Sr., LB
Defense:
39 solo tackles
71 total tackles
7 TFL
2 PD
2 fumble recoveries
1 sack

Chad Jones
Special Teams:
Kicking:
23 of 27 PAT
1 of 1 field goal
22 long

Weston Nolt
Defense:
17 solo tackles
26 total tackles
12.5 TFL
4 hurries
3.5 sacks
2 caused fumbles
1 PD
Special Teams:
Punting:
5 punts
172 yards
34.4 yards per punt
1 inside 20

2022 Offensive Outlook: “We are really excited about the experience of our returning skill positions. Our junior quarterback Sam McCracken was thrown into the fire last season as a sophomore due to an injury and took the reigns of the offense for the last 7 games. Playing alongside him at running back with being a returning 1,000-yard rusher in Andre Weidman and All-Section Receiver Jeremiah Knowles. Evan Boley (WR) and Quintin Pfautz (TE) also earned valuable playing time last season and will be key contributors to our success. Our biggest focus this off-season has been bolstering our offensive lines. We return Left Tackle Weston Nolt and MacGyver Balmer that saw significant playing time last season. Seth Heinsey, Travis Martin, and Cole Freeman have a wealth of experience playing varsity football. We are excited about the potential we have upfront”.

2022 Defensive Outlook: “Our defense returns our entire linebacking core and 3/4 of our secondary from last year. This group has shown flashes of being a great back 7, they need to continue and grow this summer and the early part of the season. We are going to rely heavily on their ability. Up front, we return 1/2 of our defensive line. This group has worked hard this offseason getting bigger, faster, and stronger to have a dominant season.”

2022 Special Teams Outlook: “We return our Kicker Chad Jones and our Punter Weston Nolt. They have both continued to grow and develop since last season. Jeremiah Knowles has shown the ability to be a really special kick returner.”

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