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Lions' roar may mean business

September 03, 1998|By CURT HORNBECKER / Staff Correspondent

WALKERSVILLE, Md. - Like every other football coach, Walkersville's Hal Grau feels like his club has what it takes to give Middletown a run for the Monocacy Valley Athletic League football title. The difference is that Grau might very well have a point.

Having returning starters at 16 positions from a team which finished 7-3 last year provides the fourth-year Lions boss with a little more than guarded optimism.

"We have good overall team size," said Grau. "We have a lot of kids around 200 pounds, but more importantly, all of them can run real well. We run a wing-T offense, so they have to be able to run well. Plus, all the kids worked real hard on the weights this summer and got a lot stronger."

Adam "Big Country" Weddle, a returning starter at strong tackle, will bolster an offensive line which boasts three returning starters, attracting the attention of not just the opposing coaches, but college scouts as well. Larry Fellows (center) and David St. John (guard), both seniors, are also returning starters.

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"He would be considered a Division I-AA or Division II prospect," said Grau of Weddle. "He has already had some Division I interest. He benches about 350, and when you're 6-5, and 250 pounds, you're going to open some eyes."

Opposing defenses will have the unenviable task of harnessing Lions fullback Tony Wilson, a 275-pound junior who, according to Grau, "can really run."

Also returning from last season's starting backfield are quarterback Craig Bauguess, who started as a sophomore last year, with senior John Pelletier, a two-way starter returning at halfback. Senior David Aberbanel returns as the starting wingback, with seniors Steve Zeender and Lane Strobel returning at split end.

Defensively, seven starters return, including virtually the entire linebacking corp, with Fellows and Brett DeMeza inside and Aberbanel outside. Pelletier and Chris Rose, a senior, return in the defensive secondary.

With the final game of the regular season game coming against powerful Middletown, Grau is hoping the game will be played "with everything on the line."

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