Flucos face tough season

Coach Barnett notes that he has some quality players returning to lead the Flucos into battle. Anchoring the defense will be senior linebacker Devon Goode, who was runner-up for defensive player of the year last season. Other defensive standouts returning this season include senior Joey Shaheen at defensive back, junior Marcus Jackson at linebacker, and sophomore Jalen Harrison at linebacker.

On the offensive side of the ball, senior running back Javon Burton will certainly get a lot of carries, based on his fine performance last year. Sophomore wide receiver Jalen Harrison is expected to be threat, as well. At the all-important quarterback position Barnett has senior transfer student Dashon Tibbs, (who has come over from Albemarle) and junior returnee, Austin Foster. At a recent practice, both of these quarterbacks looked like they will be equally talented in throwing the ball, and in pulling it down and running for yardage.

Josh Wheaton and Geoff Goodwin, two juniors who played varsity ball last year as sophomores, are expected to lead the offensive and defensive line play, Coach Barnett reports that his offensive and defensive lines this year will be a little bit inexperienced, as a number of linemen from last year’s team have graduated. Nonetheless, he is calling on some back-ups from last season, and some lineman moving up for the junior varsity squad, to step up and play tough in manning the trenches, week to week.

Kicking duties this year are expected to be handled by Christian Franco, who is also on the Fluco soccer squad. Coach Barnett advises that the coaching staff is still evaluating prospects for handling the special teams return-man duties.

Coach Barnett said that he will have competent assistant coaches working with the student athletes. These coaches include: Marcus Carter, Jason Davis, Kenny Yowell, Justin Stauffer, Mitchell Pace, Dave Johnson, A.J. Smart and Andre Key. Mike Sheridan will coach the junior varsity team.

This year’s schedule started with a winning scrimmage at home on Aug. 17 against Spotswood High School. The first regular season game will be a home contest with nearby Prince Edward County High School on Friday (Aug. 24). This official home opener will begin at 7:30 p.m.

After Prince Edward the Flucos travel to Goochland County to face a former Jefferson District foe, and a team that made the Virginia High School League (VHSL) playoffs last season. The Flucos then return home to host Spotsylvania County on Sept.7. Following that game the Flucos take on are two other non-Jefferson District VHSL playoff teams from last year. The Flucos will travel to Buckingham County on Sept. 14, and will host Kettle Run High School on Sept. 21.

The Flucos do not start Jefferson district play until Sept. 28, when they travel to Charlottesville High. They then have two more Jefferson District away games, against Louisa County and Powhatan, before returning late in the season for a Jefferson District home opener on Oct. 19 against Monticello High School. They then close out their regular season by hosting Western Albemarle on Oct. 26. There are few soft spots in this schedule which is very similar to last year’s schedule, when virtually every team the Flucos played outside the Jefferson District was a play-off team with very few losses on their season.

Photo by Fluvanna Sports Photography.

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