FAIRBANKS, Alaska - The Lathrop Malemutes open their regular season on the road with the Eagle River Wolves. Both programs faced each other in the semifinals of the Division II playoffs where the Wolves got the game winning touchdown late in the fourth quarter. The Malemutes come into this season as the defending Railbelt champions and do so with new pieces in important positions. They have a new starting quarterback, running back, wide receivers, tackles and that's only on offense. The defense is also plugging some new players in as well.
"It's different every year. I've been watching a lot of film, getting prepared for this game.” Said Josiah Opp. “It's been a lot of hype around with the team, ready for it, and I feel like if we go out there strong, I guess we'll be doing alright. As a Jamboree we have some things to fix, but now we are getting those technique things down, getting ready coming together as a team, working as an engine, real good function."
"To me, to me I think I think it's all good because now we have experience against Eagle River.” Said AJ Olo. “We know what they run and stuff, practicing what they play and stuff. I think it's good to have a team to practice with and get better. You know we started out rough, but It is a work in progress, so hopefully we come together as a team and get better."
Their defense will need to look out for Eagle River's deep passing game. Second, the offensive line needs to keep Jace Henry up.
Henry is poised to possibly run and throw for over a 1,000 yards, and his line will be instrumental in accomplishing that. Lastly, the special teams could be the x-factor. Lathrop has a lot of speed, and their return game boasts some speedsters.
"It will be really good because that is the one thing that is my strength, being able to throw and I'm such a physical runner as a dynamic too. It’s actually very good because I've been looking forward, like you always look forward to your senior season, to go out with a bang, but now that it's here like it's come so soon. Now I’m trying to make the best of all the moments I have." Said Jace Henry.