Dowagiac hosting Vicksburg for opener Thursday

Published 7:50 pm Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Dowagiac football team will host Vicksburg for its season opener Thursday. (Leader photo/File)

The Dowagiac football team will host Vicksburg for its season opener Thursday. (Leader photo/File)

Defending Wolverine Conference West Division champion Dowagiac won its first 10 games of the season in 2012.

The Chieftains ended up 10-1 after falling in the Division 5 District championship game to Grand Rapids South Christian.

Dowagiac is facing the prospect of replacing 18 out of 22 starters, including both quarterbacks, its all-state kicker, its linebacking corps and its secondary.

Veteran Chieftain coach Mike Stanger is hoping that he has the pieces to fix the puzzle heading into Thursday’s game against visiting Vicksburg.

The Bulldogs and Chieftains have met seven times since Dowagiac joined the Wolverine Conference. The Chieftains are 5-2 against Vicksburg, including last year’s 21-7 victory.

The Bulldogs finished the 2012 campaign with a 3-6 record.

Kickoff at Chris Taylor-Alumni Field is set for 7 p.m.


Otsego at Edwardsburg

The Eddies finished last year at 6-4 and qualified for the state playoffs for the third consecutive season.

But it wasn’t easy for Edwardsburg, which was consumed by injuries.

Coach Kevin Bartz hopes that the injury bug his team had to endure last year is behind them.

The Eddies will play host to Otsego, which was also 6-4 in 2012.

Edwardsburg has switched to a 3-3-5 defense this season. The change was due to personnel, but also in hopes of improving on last year’s numbers. The Eddies allowed 27.5 points per game in 2012.

Kickoff at Leo Hoffman Field is slated for 7 p.m.


New Buffalo at Cassopolis

The Cassopolis Rangers are hoping to rebound from a disappointing 2012.

For the first time since 2005, the Rangers did not qualify for the post season.

Second-year coach Dan Purlee believes that this year’s team can improve on its 4-5 record and get back into the playoffs.

A potent offense led by quarterback Vashaun Morgan and running back Trevon Brown, hopefully will click. The Rangers return six starters on defense.

The Bison were also 4-5 last season.

New Buffalo and Cassopolis have never meet on the football field in the modern era. That will all change beginning next year when they are members of the Berrien-Cass-St. Joseph Conference (BCS).

Kickoff at William F. Scott Field is scheduled for 7 p.m.