The Spartans will travel to Amherst, N.S., to face the Wolfpack in a Moncton Football Association (MFA) Atom Division game. The opening kickoff is set for 1 p.m.
This will be Summerside’s third year in the MFA, and the Spartans are coming off a very successful 2013 season – advancing all the way to the league’s championship game.
The Spartans, who were the top offensive team last season, have only four returning players, and lost a lot of offensive firepower with the graduation of quarterback Charlie DesRoches and receivers Charlie Turner and Sahib Singh.
Sophomore Connor Keough, who has previously experience at quarterback, moves under centre.
“Connor played quarterback in spring football, which will really help him this fall as he knows many of the offensive plays already,” said Spartans head coach John Turner. “Along with Max Chisholm and Armand Singh playing in the spring as well, this should really help our offence move the chains this season.
“We feel good about our quarterback situation, and we like what we have seen from our offence in training camp.”
The Spartans are also led offensively by second-year full back Parker Williams from Charlottetown.
“If we can get Parker running down hill, not many defensive players are going to want to tackle this 170-pound running back,” said Turner. “He will be the key to set up our outside running game and our passing attack.”
Defensively, the Spartans only have linebacker Landon Gallant returning, and he will be looked upon to anchor a young defence.
“Landon has shown us in scrimmages he will be a force this year,” said Spartans defensive co-ordinator Todd Williams. “Although the rest of our defence might be young and inexperienced, they make up for that with their athleticism and aggressiveness.”
With 17 new players on the squad, the Spartans are hoping to be competitive and be in the hunt for one of the four playoff spots in the six-team league. The Moncton Panthers, Moncton Blue Bombers, Sackville Titans and the Riverview Royals are the other teams.
“There is a huge learning curve for these kids with football, but they already have improved since Day 1, and we are excited to see how they react in a game situation,” offered Turner. “The boys are ready and it should be a lot of fun.”
Roster for Summerside Cox and Palmer Spartans
Quarterback– Connor Keough
Running back– Ethan Haakman
Fullback – Parker Williams
Tight end – Ben Murphy
Wide receiver – Zach Blood
Wide receiver – Arman Singh
Wide receiver – Max Chisholm
Offensive lineman – Jayden Ryder-Clements
Offensive lineman – Shawn Matheson
Offensive lineman – Nathan Enman
Defensive lineman – Connor Murphy
Defensive lineman – Daniel Tamtom
Defensive lineman – Logan Rogers
Inside linebacker – Landon Gallant
Inside linebacker – Colby MacDonald
Outside linebacker – Kale Wood
Outside linebacker – Sid McNeill
Corner back – Jordan Arsenault
Corner back – Bennett Gallant
Corner back – Phoenix MacKay
Safety – Luke Quinlan
Head coach – John Turner
Offensive co-ordinator – Dave Chisholm
Running back and receivers coach – Shawn Keough
Offensive Line Coach – Cody MacKay
Defensive co-ordinator – Todd Williams
Assistant defensive co-ordinator – Paul Walsh
Special teams coach – Paul Quinlan