High School Football

High school football season preview: ALTON REDBIRDS

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Eric Dickerson and the Alton Redbirds could be in for a surprise if their offensive line is as good as the first-year coach anticipates.

Alton was 5-4 last season, but failed to qualify for the playoffs. It graduated many of its skill position players, including quarterback Lavonte Hobbs, leading rushers Kareem Hamilton and Larry Calvin and top receivers Demonte Wigfall and Josh Lovings.

Their departures created an urgency for Dickerson, Alton’s former defensive coordinator, to hit the ground running as the Redbirds seek their first postseason berth since 2006.

OFFENSE

Senior center Charlie Sholar, senior tackle Zach Llewellyn and junior tackle Cody Markle return on the line as two-year starters. Dickerson said all are at least 6-foot and weigh 240-plus pounds.

Alton has running back potential in seniors Jameyon Alexander and Asa Collins and sophomores Tony Smith and Kiondray Samelton.

Senior Keenan Stegall takes over at quarterback.

Senior Kenneth Burnett, who missed most of last season with a broken ankle, and senior Matt McDonald are the leading receiver candidates.

DEFENSE

Dickerson said some of his linemen will work both sides, particularly Sholar and Llewellyn. Senior Edward Nicholson also will be the line.

Senior defensive end Asa Collins and senior cornerback Simeon Brown return.

Alexander and Burnett will play safety. Senior Malik Williams and junior Kalen Samelton are the top linebackers.

— David Wilhelm

2015 Schedule

Date

Opponent

Time

Aug. 28

Rock Island

7 p.m.

Sept. 4

at Quincy

7 p.m.

Sept. 11

East St. Louis

7 p.m.

Sept. 18

at Belleville East

7 p.m.

Sept. 25

O’Fallon

7 p.m.

Oct. 2

at Collinsville

7 p.m.

Oct. 9

Granite City

7 p.m.

Oct. 16

at Edwardsville

7 p.m.

Oct. 23

Belleville West

7 p.m.

2014 Results

Opponent

Result

Score

Pekin

W

44-12

at Cahokia

W

21-12

O’Fallon

L

27-0

at Edwardsville

L

35-7

Granite City

W

56-0

at Belleville East

W

17-14

at East St. Louis

L

27-7

Collinsville

W

29-6

at Belleville West

L

45-24

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