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40 teams in 40 days – Day 34: Lancaster Catholic (3)

Written by: on Friday, August 24th, 2012. Follow David Mika on Twitter.

 

2011 season

Lancaster Catholic went 16-0 and won the PIAA 2A state title for the second time in three years.

Andrew Dzurik led the way passing with 1,994 yards and 21 touchdowns.

Roman Clay led the ground game with 1,899 yards and 31 touchdowns. Brandon Hollister rushed for 1,547 yards and 25 touchdowns.

Sean Titus had 37 catches for 841 yards and 14 touchdowns. Charles Sweigert caught 45 passes 914 yards and five touchdowns.

 

What’s new

Lancaster Catholic won their second PIAA 2A state title last season against Tyrone, 17-7. But they won’t have a chance to defend their title in 2012.

The Crusaders moved up in classification from 2A to 3A. “The kids realized we have a bull eyes on our back this season,” said Harbach. “It’s been difficult getting non-league games this season. The kids understand the competition is going to be tougher this season. We are playing all AAAA teams this season. This should help us in the playoffs.”

Competition is going to be stronger and we are going to have to play 10 full games instead of 10 half games. We are looking forward to the challenge.

Q & A with Lancaster Catholic head football coach Bruce Harbach

We sat down with Harbach and talked to him about his team for the 2012 season.

How is your camp going this summer?

We are down in numbers this year, but we have quality kids. We had a decent off-season. They come to work and they understand their roles. So far practices have been good.

The kids know they have a bull eyes on their back and it doesn’t matter if we are 2A or 3A team. We need to take care of business.

 

Who do you have coming back on offense?

We have three returning starters on the offensive line, Luke McDonald (6-2, 245), Shay Mento (6-0, 260) and Benjamin Bauer (6-2, 240). We have to replace a tackle and a guard. We have some guys that may step in like, Thomas McIntyre (6-5, 240), Keegan Sheedy (6-4, 235) and Patrick McBrearty (5-10, 240). All these kids have experience. We need to stay healthy up front.

We have our tight end back too, Nevin Pagan (6-2, 225).

We have two kids battling for the quarterback spot. They are Evan Purvis (6-2, 190). We moved him from receiver. We have a transfer from Warwick, Aaron Springer (5-11, 180). We really won’t know who the starter is until after our second scrimmage.

Roman Clay (5-11, 215) is back at running back. He is probably one of the best backs we ever had. He is a physical kid and put on another ten pounds during the off-season. He is about 215 right now. He is a power type runner. He is tough to bring down.

Our fullback is back, Carmelo Cruz (6-0, 225). He got bigger. He is about 225. We have a couple of young backs that might get some time. They are Nassir Weaver (5-9, 165) and Trey Miller (5-9, 180). We also have a transfer that came in from Texas, Eric Patterson (5-11, 180). He will be in the mix.

I think our skill kids are second to none. Our receivers looked real good in 7-on-7 this summer. They are big and tall. We have Sean Titus (6-2, 190) back. He did a great job for us last year. We have Charles Scarff (6-6, 220) who is like a receiver/tight end. Rafael Mateo (6-2, 175) is going to play in there. Kurt Kessler (6-1, 180) will see time at receiver. Stephen Sheetz (6-1, 170) will be in the mix.

We may have more kids playing two-way this season.

 

Who do you have coming back on defense?

Depth is going to be a problem on the defensive line. At nose guard is Shay Mento. Maybe Benjamin Bauer and Luke McDonald  will be there a little bit. Keegan Sheedy will be in there. Steve Reichwein will be in the mix.

We have a good group of linebackers led by Carmelo Cruz. We have Kyle Harmish and Harrison Heise. We also have Kurt Kessler. All these linebackers can run. We need that in a 5 – 3 defense.

We have two players back in the secondary. Isiah Taltoan at one corner. He is our shut down corner. Sean Titus is at safety. Stephen Sheetz will be playing out there.

 

Who do you have coming back on special teams?

Evan Purvis is going to do the placekicking and punting as of now. Harrison Heise might do some punting too. Sean Titus is returning punts.

 

League

Our first three non-league games are brutal. We’ve got Dallastown, Governor Mifflin and Erie McDowell. Then our next two games are Manheim Township and Penn Manor. We play Wilson week seven.

The kids are looking forward to going to Section one.

 

To have a successful season you have to?

We have to develop our young players and stay healthy. They are going to have to play early on and get some experience. Our goal hasn’t changed. Win the league, district and states. For us to do that, things need to fall in place. We may run the ball more this year. We have a nice line and two good runners. We need to control the ball.

 

Home Opener

Lancaster Catholic opens home against Dallastown on August 31st

 

40 teams in 40 days

Day 1 – Mount Carmel Area (4)            Day 11 – Scranton (2)

Day 2 – Manheim Central (3)                Day 12 – Pottsville (11)

Day 3 – Delaware Valley (2)                 Day 13 – Cardinal O’Hara (12)

Day 4 – Southern Columbia (4)             Day 14 – Shenandoah Valley (11)

Day 5 – Berwick Area (2)                      Day 15- Central Dauphin (3)

Day 6 – Easton Area (11)                       Day 16 – Scranton Prep (2)

Day 7 – LaSalle (12)                               Day 17 – Garnet Valley (1)

Day 8 – Downingtown East (1)              Day 18 – Spring-Ford (1)

Day 9 – Council Rock North (1)            Day 19 – Southern Lehigh (11)

Day 10 – Riverside (2)                           Day 20 – West Catholic (12)

Day 21 – Ridley (1)                               Day 31 – Roman Catholic (12)

Day 22 – Imhotep Charter (12)              Day 32 – William Penn Charter (Inter-Ac)

Day 23 – Pen Argyl (11)                        Day 33 – Minersville (11)

Day 24 – Pennridge (1)

Day 25 – Schuylkill Haven (11)

Day 26 –Bishop McDevitt (3)

Day 27 – Danville (4)

Day 28 – Whitehall (11)

Day 29 – Valley View (2)

Day 30 – Wyomissing Area (3)

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