Marshall prepares for season opener against New Ulm
MARSHALL — After watching several teams around the state get their seasons underway on Friday, the Marshall football team will finally have their turn this afternoon when they kick off their season against New Ulm at noon.
“We’re excited,” Marshall coach Terry Bahlmann said. “We started (practicing) when they had the first couple of weeks they gave us, so we’ve been practicing for a good three weeks. When they announced that we had a game, it raised the energy level a ton and we just want to appreciate playing football, hanging out with your teammates and the kids get a chance to play and we’re really looking forward to it.”
Marshall will have a mix of fresh and familiar faces, led by a strong class of 17 seniors. This years seniors are Ivan Celedon, DeMario Gaines, Brevin Runia, Grant Louwagie, Bryce Lance, Joe Paradis, Jack Bly, AJ Toulouse, Jacob Hughes, Thomas Thordson, Dawson Kesteloot, Carlos Reyes, Spencer Wambeke, Tanner Myhrberg, Zach Allen, Jesse Przybys and Blake Fogelson.
Marshall also has a solid group of juniors to help guide the upperclassmen. This years juniors are Keaton Maertens, Jake Eben, Noah Wilts, Adam Meyer, Bryant Paulsen, Tucker Mauch, Caden Fenger, Logan Legatt, Lance Her, Ethan Brau, Nikolai Goode, Connor Neubeck, Eddie Garcia, Keiton Walerius, Andon Bruss, Brody Deutz, Dalton Vorwald, Deylin Hasert, Evan Greenfield, Kadam Brinkman and Cayden Werner.
Bahlmann said they’ll look to their veterans to lead the way and expects a lot of them to fill in the missing pieces that they lost from a season ago.
“We always talk to our guys about how everyone is going to get an opportunity, it’s about what they do with that opportunity,” Bahlmann said. “With the seniors we lost, there’s a lot of opportunities for guys to step up and we haven’t had as much preparation time as in the past, so we’re going to see a lot of guys in the first game and build some depth because with the rules we’ll be under for players sitting out and things, we’ll need some guys ready and when their chance comes, they have to show their stuff.”
Rounding out the roster are sophomores Jonah Vierstraete, Tyler Maeyaert, Jon Gruhot, Chidi Nwakama, Brandon Simpson, Jett Wing, Gavin Peterson, Lucas Kayser, Spencer Scherr, Hunter Krueger, Malachi Klemm, Riely Gilbertson, Salmon Osman, Andrew Wallen, Klayton Weller, Jacob Buysse, Ed Nubile, Lyam Brooks, Jackson Lendt, Jose Cano, Evan Schotzko, Caleb Lanoue and Omar Adbi.
New Ulm, meanwhile, will be led by Cole Ranweiler, Caleb Arndt, Ethan Stade, Isaiah Miller, Riley Stimpert and Brayden Geariety. Bahlmann said the Eagles utilize the single-wing formation and have had some time to sharpen it since last season.
“The coach is in his second-year there, so I’m sure they’re going to run the version of the single-wing and have had a year to practice it, so I’m sure they’re going to be a little more polished,” Bahlmann said. “Last year they played us in both an odd and an even front, so we’ve prepared for both.”
Defensively, Bahlmann said they’ll need to stop the run right away and force the Eagles to throw.
“We have to stop the run right away and put them behind the chains and in bad yardage and make them throw,” Bahlmann said.
Going into the first game of the season, Bahlmann said he’s looking forward to just getting back onto the field for some competition and watching his athletes play the sport they love.
“I’m looking forward to just being on the football field with competition and watch the guys play,” Bahlmann said. “I know they’ve been looking forward to it, I’m happy for our seniors, it’s been crazy since March for them and for the chance for them to get on the field together with their friends and teammates, it’s going to be awesome.”