Tigers plan to kick off season in high gear

Head coach Arlee Conners believes a solid core of returning players could put his Oakville High football team in contention for another district championship. Bill Milligan photo

Head coach Arlee Conners believes a solid core of returning players could put his Oakville High football team in contention for another district championship. Bill Milligan photo

By STEPHEN GLOVER

After losing the first seven games of the 2008 season, the Oakville Senior High High football team hammered out a three-game winning streak to capture the Class 6, District 1 Tournament.

The Tigers (4-8, 1-6 Suburban West) proceeded to defeat Mehlville 24-7 in the Class 6 sectional before losing to Fox 39-27 in the state quarterfinal.

Oakville head coach Arlee Conners believes that a solid core of returning players could put the Tigers in contention for another district championship as well as a possible conference championship.

“We definitely didn’t want to start the way we did, but we finished the way we wanted to,” Conners said. “We plan on starting off a lot better this year.”

Senior quarterback Joe Plassmeyer returns for the 2009 season after completing 162 of 319 passes for 2,611 yards, 24 touchdowns and 11 interceptions last year.

“Joe made a lot of progress since last season,” Conners said. “He’s got a lot to prove this season.”

Junior running back/defensive back Darrion Moore led the Tigers in rushing with 106 carries for 644 yards and three touchdowns.

“We were looking for some answers at running back last season and when we put him in, we just couldn’t pull him out,” Conners said. “He’s a gamer.”

Oakville’s Paul Taylor should see time at running back, wide receiver and defensive back. He carried the ball 14 times for 46 yards last year while also hauling in 18 receptions for 361 yards receiving and three touchdowns. Taylor also racked up 70 tackles on defense as well as four sacks, two fumble recoveries and three interceptions.

“Paul will also be our main kickoff returner,” Conners said. “He’s another kid that’s gotten a lot of interest from colleges because he’s come in faster and stronger this season.”

Senior wide receiver/corner back Lavell Boyd returns as the team’s leading receiver from last season after recording a total of 18 catches for 527 yards and five touchdowns.

“Lavell is definitely a ball of dynamite,” Conners said. “He’s an explosive player that can make big time plays.”

Another wide-receiving threat is senior Mike DeGuire, who also should see time at safety. DeGuire was second in receptions with 27 catches for 401 yards and three touchdowns. He also amassed 55 tackles that included one fumble recovery and one interception.

“Mike’s a guy that’s very reliable on the field,” Conners said. “He probably will get a lot of big-time plays for us this season.”

Senior offensive lineman/defensive tackle Kody Kolb came into the preseason in excellent shape.

“Kody’s probably the smartest kid on the team and has got into good shape in the off-season,” Conners said. “He’s gotten a lot of interest from the Ivy League schools.”

Senior offensive guard Cody Davis again should be a force in the trenches for the Tigers.

“Cody started every game for us last year,” Conners said. “He should be another solid guy for us on the offensive line.”

Senior tight end/defensive end Mike Cyliax returns this season after recording 19 catches for 253 yards and four touchdowns. Cyliax also recorded 27 tackles and one sack on defense.

“Mike’s a very reliable receiver,” Conners said. “We’ll do a lot of play action and he’s a guy that we’ll go to.”

Senior linebacker/fullback Zach Melber led the Tigers with 122 tackles, six sacks, one fumble recovery and one interception on defense. He also ran the ball 11 times for 40 yards and one touchdown while also catching four passes for 50 yards and a touchdown.

“Zach is a very intense kid,” Conners said. “He’s a third year starter on defense and should be one of the better linebackers in the area.”

Another senior linebacker/fullback for the Tigers is Darnell Cooper, who carried the ball 44 times for 143 yards while also racking up 33 tackles, two fumble recoveries and one sack.

“Darnell is a good runner and blocker on offense and very solid on defense,” Conners said. “He’s probably one of the bright spots on our defense.”

Senior linebacker/quarterback Phil Schneider was second on the team in tackles with a total of 84 takedowns.

“Phil was elected as a team captain as a junior and has grown and gotten bigger and strong,” Conners said. “He should do a lot of good things for us on defense.”

At inside linebacker is senior Jake Julius who amassed 42 tackles and one interception.

“Jake started last year at outside linebacker and we’ve moved him over to inside linebacker,” Conners said. “He’s a guy that’s always in the right place at the right time.”

Oakville Varsity Football

Date Opponent Site Time

Aug. 28 Vianney A 7 p.m.

Sept. 4 Mehlville H 7 p.m.

Sept. 11 Lindbergh A 7 p.m.

Sept. 18 Marquette H 7 p.m.

Sept. 25 Parkway South A 7 p.m.

Oct. 2 Kirkwood H 7 p.m.

Oct. 9 Lafayette A 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 16 Northwest H 7 p.m.

Oct. 23 Seckman H 7 p.m.

Oct. 30 Fox A 7 p.m.