Mustang gridders boast large contingent of returning starters

By Mike Wertman, Sports Writer Posted 26 August 2014 at 12:00 am

Photo by Mike Wertman – Prepping for the upcoming season are these veteran members of the Medina varsity football squad. In front are Brett Pecoraro, Tom Follman, Jason Hellwig, Dylan Lewis, Ty Hrovat, Trevor Bentley and Devon Joy. In back are Adam Cotter, Charles Beach, Andrew Nichols, Noah Banazwski, Brandon Schoolcraft and Kyle Herman.

Looking to keep the momentum from last year’s sectional qualifying campaign, Medina’s varsity football squad is prepping for the upcoming season led by a contingent of over a dozen returning regulars.

Senior quarterback Jason Hellwig, a three year starter, heads that veteran group which is almost evenly split between Medina and Lyndonville players. Hellwig, who earned first team ‘B’ North Division All-Star honors, threw 13 touchdown passes last fall to become Medina’s career TD leader with a total of 29.

The Mustangs veteran group also includes senior Brett Pecoraro (RB/DB), junior Tom Follman (RB/LB), junior Dylan Lewis (WR/DB), senior Ty Hrovat (WR/DB), senior Trevor Bentley (WR/DB), senior Devon Joy (WR/RB/DB), sophomore Eric Neace (RB/LB), senior Adam Cotter (OL), junior Charles Beach (OL), senior Andrew Nichols (OL), junior Noah Banazwski (OL), senior Brandon Schoolcraft (TE/LB), senior Kyle Herman (OL/LB), senior Devonte Howard (OL) and junior Kalvin Packer (OL).

Lewis and Beach earned second team ‘B’ North honors while Hrovat, Pecoraro and Schoolcraft were honorable mention picks.

Medina’s key losses to graduation was the first team ‘B’ North Division All-Star running back/linebacker duo of Kyle Barna and Dan ‘Munjie’ Brown.

The Mustangs 28 member roster also includes juniors Tyler Valley (QB/WR/DB), Cyrus MacFarland (OL/DL), Tevin Riley (OL), Chase Pecoraro (WR/DB), David Moore (OL), Zach Jones (WR/DB), Gage Grabowski (TE/LB), Charlie Enderby (FB/LB), Andrew Dusett (OL), Trent Cotriss (RB/DB), Baylee VerCruysse (OL) and sophomore Tyler Howard (TE/FB/LB).

“Both offensively and defensively we’ve just got more depth this year which is really big,” said head Coach Eric Valley. “We’ve got some real good quality kids and they are working hard. It’s going to be a tough division but we’re really excited about the season. The keys will be to stay healthy and do the little things right.”

Medina, which went 3-3 in the division at 5-4 overall last fall, open the ‘B’ North campaign at Newfane on September 6.

The Mustangs will tune up for the opener by hosting East High of Buffalo and Wilson in a scrimmage this Saturday.

Medina’s Schedule

Sept. 6 – at Newfane, 1 p.m.
Sept. 12 – Bennett, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 19 – Lake Shore, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 26 – Burgard, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 3 – at Barker/Roy-Hart, 7 p.m. at Middleport
Oct. 10 – at Lew-Port, 7 p.m.
Oct. 17 – Albion, 7 p.m.