King City Mixes Youth with New Scheme

Published 08/18 2013 09:10PM

Updated 08/18 2013 10:55PM

(KING CITY, Mo.) A middle-of-the road three-game win streak was the high point for King City in 2012. The brief hot stretch came after an 0-2 start and preceded losses in their final five games.

If the Wildkats want to improve on a 3-7 campaign this year, they'll need a lot of production from their youth.

"We have a big underclassmen group that are coming in that's pretty talented," head coach Micah Breckenridge said. "Upperclassmen, we're kind of thin on numbers, but we've got some good quality."

That quality includes five seniors who'll be critical in getting a larger-than normal underclassmen group acclimated to the Grand River Conference. Returning All-State senior tight end John Spiking is just one those pieces that'll be a key cog.

"He's definitely going to be a guy we're going to look to for leadership offensively and defensively."

"We lost a lot of size last year, but we're going to have a lot of speed on our line," Spiking said. "We've got a whole new offense this year and I think that's going to help us out a lot."

That new offense aims to make up for the experience and size that 10 graduated seniors took with them while maximizing the team's speed. That bodes well for guys like senior running back Chase Gillip, who believes the new scheme can catch opponents off guard.

"I've got about a hundred percent faith in the team this year," he said. "I think we're going to do pretty good this year. Some of the powerhouses think they can run right up the middle. Our defensive line, I think they're going to be able to stop anything up the middle."

It will be no easy task with a tough schedule ahead, but, despite a few growing pains, the group is confident they can be a headache to anyone on the slate.

"I think we'll match up pretty good for the most part," Spiking said. "A lot of the [conference] lost a lot of their size."

"Hopefully we can work out a few things early in the season and finish strong," Breckenridge added.

King City opens the season Aug. 30th in a cross-conference meeting at Lathrop.

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