40 teams in 40 days – Day 28: Whitehall (11)
The Zephyrs were led by junior quarterback Nicholas Shafnisky. He had only one interception all year. Shafniksy’s main target was Logan Kreglow. He caught 17 passes for 249 yards and two scores.
Andrew Harris led all rushers with 1,086 yards on 138 carries and 17 touchdowns. Whitehall finished the season with an 8-4 record. They defeated Pocono Mountain East in the first round of playoffs. They lost to Liberty the next weekend to end their season.
Q & A with Whitehall head football coach Brian Gilbert
We sat down with Gilbert and talked to him about his team for the 2012 season.
How is your off-season going this summer?
The guys are working hard and competing in 7-on-7s this summer. They worked hard in the weight room this off-season.
Who do you have coming back on offense?
We have two guys back on the offensive line and both are three-year starters. Both these guys will anchor our line, Jacob Wygant (6-0, 240) and Aaron Genevese (6-3, 290). We also have one player that played some, but got hurt. His name is Thomas Ritter. The other two positions there will be a battle.
Whenever you return a quarterback back it gives you advantage. Nichloas Shafniksy had a great junior year. He threw 15 touchdowns and only one interception. That interception was a hail Mary pass at the end of a half.
We are deep at running back. We have three halfbacks returning that all will be getting carries. James Wah, Ryan Bonshak and Darius Young. We have three fullbacks that all will get some time, Zachary Delp, John Johnson and Jacob Rex.
Our challenge is to manage everyone so they all get touches.
We have Nicholas Sommer who is returning at receiver from last year. His twin brother is back playing Seth Sommer. Ryan Bonshak will get some time at receiver. Sophomore Connor Sullivan will get some reps at receiver as well. We might move some of the running backs out there too.
It’s going to be a good healthy competition at tight end. The two guys in the battle are EJ Setar and Nicholas Nejad. Setar put some good weight on in the off-season. Nejad is a little bit bigger.
Who do you have coming back on defense?
DL Tyler Carter had a knee injury last year against Liberty. He was the leading tackler in the Lehigh valley conference until he went down. The injury was so severe that he is still rehabbing it and won’t be back until early October. That is a tough loss not having him.
Aaron Genevese and Jacob Wygant have a lot of experience on the line. Stephen Buss is the fourth fastest kid on our team and he will line up on the defensive end position. Other guys that are going to be in the mix are Eduardo Rivera and Thomas Ritter.
Our leading tackler from last year is back, linebacker Zach Delp. He was the quiet leader last year. We will have some newcomers around him. These guys were backups last year and worked real hard in the off-season. Jake Kerchner, Jacob Rex and Nicholas Nejad will all be playing at linebacker. These three guys will give Delp some support.
We have a lot of guys back at secondary. James Wah, John Johnson and Ryan Bonshak are all back. A transfer student from Wilson West Lawn, Darius Young will be in the mix. Chad Rex will also get some time back there.
Who do you have coming back on special teams?
As for kickers, we are really lucky here. Tyler George will be our kicker. We have a sophomore that will do some kick offs for us, Brandon Levano.
Ryan Bonshak is our punter. Bonshak will also return punts for us. Kickoff returns it can be anyone of those four running backs.
If you ask anyone, this is one of the most well balanced years that we are going to see in the Lehigh Valley Conference. You take Allen and Dieruff out of the mix and every game can go either way. No one is going to say this is an easy week. Top to bottom this league is dangerous. Right from day one you better be ready to play. You better not look ahead.
To have a successful season you have to?
Stay healthy. Other than the running back position we don’t have a lot of depth. We can’t look ahead. We need to take one game at a time.
Whitehall opens at Spring-Ford on August 31st
40 teams in 40 days
Day 21 – Ridley (1)
Day 22 – Imhotep Charter (12)
Day 23 – Pen Argyl (11)
Day 24 – Pennridge (1)
Day 25 – Schuylkill Haven (11)
Day 26 –Bishop McDevitt (3)
Day 27 – Danville (4)
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