Trojans kick off at home

WORTON — If you’ve ever stood on the sidelines with Harold Somerville, then you know that Kent County High School’s head football coach is a man of few words.

He’s also direct and plain-spoken.

So when Somerville says that he anticipates a .500 or better season for the Trojans, then we’re apt to believe him.

Kent County kicks off Friday at home at 6:30 p.m. against Bohemia Manor, a border rival to the north in Cecil County.

Somerville ’91, who returns for the second year as head coach at his alma mater, is cautiously optimistic that this game will not be a replay of last year’s opener at Bo Manor when the Trojans were handed their lunch, 48-0.

“This group of kids are better players” than the 2-8 squad of 2022, Somerville said in a telephone interview Monday.

“They’re young,” he acknowledged, but “they’re players that are ready and they have a football IQ that is higher than teams of the recent past.”

It’s not a particularly deep team — roster totals about 32 — so they’re going to have to stay healthy, and several guys will be playing on both sides of the ball.
There are eight freshmen, all of whom came through the Spartans’ youth football program, and half a dozen others who are playing at KCHS for the first time.

Dwan Harris, a 6-foot-2, 170-pound freshman, is the starting quarterback — the Trojans’ third QB in as many years. His backup is also a freshman, Kalief Roberts.

Harris and Roberts will take snaps from junior Wesley Townsend (6-5, 280), the center of a starting offensive line of guards Harrison Gibby and Ryan Myers and tackles Trice Moore and Jamarcus Downs (6-0, 280).

The primary receivers are slot/wingback Jonah Somerville, 6-foot-5, 220-pound tight end JySir Valentine and 6-foot-2 Larry Steward, who placed third this spring in the state high jump.

Running backs are Taion Johnson, Nick Price, Scottie Ford and Brady Sutton.

Sutton, who’s had a lot of success in the KCHS wrestling program, and Steward (basketball and track and field) are seniors who are playing high school football for the first time.

On the other side of the ball, Downs and Wyatt Toulson will start at defensive tackle. Valentine and Mehki Rogers are the ends. Linebackers are Price, Moore, Myers and freshman Caiden Pritchett.

In the secondary are Roberts and Zayvion Brown as corners and Ford and Steward as safeties.

Brown will be doing the punting.

Brennen “BB” Dean, a sophomore on loan from the soccer team, has signed on as the placekicker.

Printed here is what we believe is a complete roster, listed alphabetically.

Returnees: sophomore Tyree Beck, defensive back; sophomore Zayvion Brown, cornerback and slot receiver; senior Jamarcus Downs, offensive and defensive lineman; sophomore Scottie Ford, running back and safety; junior Harrison Gibby, offensive amd defensive lineman; senior Taion Johnson, running back and linebacker; senior Trice Moore, offensive lineman and linebacker; senior Ryan Myers, offensive lineman and middle linebacker; junior Nick Price, running back and linebacker; senior DeAndre Redding, offensive and defensive lineman; senior Mehki Rogers, defensive end; senior Dylan Schauber, offensive lineman and defensive end; junior Max Schofield, offensive and defensive lineman; junior Jonah Somerville, wingback and slot receiver; junior Wyatt Toulson, offensive and defensive lineman; junior Wesley Townsend, center and defensive lineman; and junior JySir Valentine, tight end and defensive end.

Freshmen: Taeshaun Demby, backup center, and offensive and defensive lineman; Dwan Harris, quarterback; Avon Hubbard, offensive lineman; Dylan Hurtt, receiver and defensive back; Andrew Fennell, lineman; Caiden Pritchett, tight end and linebacker; Thomas Moore, defensive back and linebacker; and Kalief Roberts, backup quarterback, cornerback and running back.

Other newcomers: senior Dylan Cole, linebacker; junior Tyrell Fennell, running back and defensive back; sophomore Ramon “RJ” Peterson, receiver; senior Brady Sutton, running back and defensive back; senior Larry Steward, receiver and safety; and junior Shakur Wilson, tight end and defensive end.

Somerville’s teammate and classmate Ed Myers returns as a line coach.
The staff also includes defensive coordinator Wayne “Stump” Lee, who graduated a year after Somerville and Myers, offensive coordinator Damon Callis, Chas Willis (special teams and linemen), Gary Priddy (defense), Dontrell Lively (linebackers and running backs) and Damian Brooks (linemen).

Somerville, Myers and Lee played on the Trojans’ 1989 and ’90 state championship teams.

Willis and Lively also are KCHS football alumni.

PHOTOS BY TRISH MCGEE

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