McCluer Hosts East: Hawks, Stars, Crusaders Open Football On The Road
By Jim Wieners
Almost nine months have passed since High School Football was played on the field but now the 2012 season opens Friday, Aug. 24.
McCluer kicks off 2012 with a 4:30 home Suburban North Conference game against 2011 Class Five State Semifinalist Hazelwood East. It is a rematch of the Class Five Sectional Round won by the Spartans, 25-14. Earlier last year he two teams were in Class Five, District Three and the 8-5 Spartans blew out the 5-7 Comets, 50-21.
All nine of Hazelwood East’s opponents this year played the Spartans last year including Class Five State Runner Up Kirkwood. Two of the five losses last year, to DeSmet and McCluer North, were by two points each while the Spartans lost to Ritenour by eight.
At 7 p.m. Hazelwood Central visits Webster Groves, McCluer North visits Jefferson City, Lutheran North visits Clayton, Trinity Catholic hosts Wright City and Riverview Gardens visits Gateway Tech.
Hazelwood Central (Class Six, 5-6 last year) and Webster Groves (Class Five, 9-2 last year) were eliminated in the 2011 Sectional Round after both were state runner up in 2010 and both were State Champions in 2009 (the Hawks also won in 2008). Webster lost twice last year to Parkway Central. The Hawks were shut out three times while shutting out two opponents.
McCluer North (10-2 and a Class Six Quarterfinalist last year) opens against Jefferson City for the fifth consecutive year. In six previous meetings including state championship games in 1988 and 1993 The Stars were blown out each time by the Jays, who won their first eight games last year but lost the last two and were eliminated from post-season playoffs. McCluer North head coach Jim Schottmueller, only the second football coach in the 41-year school history, begins his 28th season which is the most by any coach in Suburban North history surpassing former Hazelwood East 27-year veteran Rick Gorzynski (1974-2000).
Hazelwood Central and McCluer North were eliminated last year from the post-season playoffs by Class Six State Runner Up CBC. Meanwhile McCluer North moves this year from Class Six to Class Five.
Lutheran North, which was in Class Three and was 9-3 last year, lost twice to Class Three State Runner Up John Burroughs while their other Crusader loss was to Class Four State Runner Up Mary Institute-Country Day School. This year LHSN will be in Class Two and had only one Class Two opponent in Principia, who will playing football as an independent and not in the Metro League. Six of the other eight opponents of the Crusaders this year are in Class Four while two others are in Class Three.
Trinity, 6-4 last year, will be playing in the Archdiocesan Athletic Association Small School Division and will not play playing long time AAA rivals Bishop DuBourg and St. Mary’s, now AAA Large School Teams. O’Fallon Christian is a new AAA Small School rival. Wright City was 1-9 last year.
Riverview was 0-10 last year and on a 12-game losing streak dating back to 2010 while Gateway Tech was 10-3 and a Class Four Quarterfinalist.
On Saturday, Aug. 25, at 1 p.m. Hazelwood West is scheduled to host Edwardsville, Ill., while McCluer South-Berkeley hosts Lift For Life Academy Charter.
According to media reports Edwardsville Teachers (represented by the Edwardsville Education Association) and Edwardsville Community Unit District Seven are reportedly in disagreement over salary and class size among some issues. Television news reports that Teachers plan to strike on Friday and if classes are called off that day it could be possible that Edwardsville could not play football Saturday and Hazelwood West may be awarded a forfeit win over the Tigers, so keep in touch with radio, television, or our web site on the potential strike situation.
Hazelwood West was 1-9 in each of the last two years and has only defeated Riverview Gardens each year. The Wildcats only win last year enabled one of their opponents, Belleville East, to play in the Illinois High School Association playoffs and the Lancers go to the second round. Edwardsville, a rival of Belleville East in the Southwestern Conference, was 5-5 and a first round playoff participant.
McCluer South-Berkeley was 5-6 last year but was a Class Three Regional Qualifier while Lift For Life was 2-8.
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