Brookfield focus is in on a return trip to the post-season

Sports
Brookfield Warriors High School Football

Although Brookfield didn’t advance to the playoffs in 2017, the Warriors kept their active consecutive streak of finishing with a non-losing season at eight. Since Brookfield has returned to the All-American Conference, they’ve been able to register a combined 13-4 record in three years. Coach Randy Clark replaced a trio of graduated First-Team All-League recipients (in 2016) with another trio last season. In 2018, they’ll need to replace six All-League players.

2018 Brookfield Warriors’ Football Preview

Head Coach: Randy Clark, 14th season (81-56)

Record:  5-5 (3-2), 3rd place in AAC Blue Tier 

What you need to know about the Brookfield Offense

Brookfield will be without their top rusher (Alex Clark, 1652 yards), top pass catcher (Alex Bell, 14 catches) and two All-League linemen (Trevor Pegg & Bailey Litz). Sophomore Hayden Gibson saw much success last year as the team’s freshman passer. Gibson completed 50% of his tosses (34-68) while throwing for 439 yards and rushing for another 252. The team will also have back a pair of junior skill players who each caught 10-balls for 100-yards (Gage Emery, 13 catches & 223 yards, and Dakota King, 11 catches & 105 yards). Emery led the Warriors’ in receiving yards and has the opportunity to take the team-lead this year as well. The last time, the school had a player who led the team in receiving in back-to-back seasons was in 2011 and 2012 (Colin Harkulich).  

Key to the Brookfield Offense

“We need to find someone to replace Alex (Clark) at running back,” points out coach Clark. “We’ll need our offensive line to step up and we’ll need to fill some big spots (on offense).”

What you need to know about the Brookfield Defense

The Warriors lost each of their top seven tacklers from the 2017 season which included Bryce Randall (58), Alex Clark (54), Anthony Yauger (50), Hayden O’Brien (5 sacks), Alex Bell (3 interceptions) and not including Noah Hartnett (3 interceptions). Junior safety Gage Emery is back from his 30 tackle season. “He’s got a great nose for the ball,” says Clark. “Bringing a lot of experience to his safety (spot).” Brookfield also returns junior linebacker Tyler Briggs and defensive ends Tyler Lucas and Dionte Colwell. 

Key to the Brookfield Defense

“We’ll need to replace our two inside linebackers,” says Clark. “Skill wise, we’ve got a lot of kids coming back, along the defensive line – same thing.” 

Offensive player to watch for

Sophomore/QB, Hayden Gibson

…Expectations are high for Gibson in year two as the team’s signal caller. “Hayden has six varsity games under his belt,” indicates Clark. “Last year he put together a 5-1 record, we’re going to use him a lot more this year by passing and running the ball. He’s a great athlete and he’s very smart.” 

Defensive player to watch for

Senior/LB, Tyler Briggs

…Briggs compiled 27 tackles a year ago. “Tyler is going to be one of the best defensive linemen around this year,” Clark praises his senior. “He’s a lot stronger and more explosive.”

2018 Schedule

Aug. 24 – McDonald, 7

Aug. 31 – at Springfield, 7

Sept. 7 – Cuyahoga Heights, 7

Sept. 14 – at Liberty, 7

Sept. 21 – South Range, 7

Sept. 28 – at Edgewood, 7

Oct. 5 – Girard, 7

Oct. 12 – at LaBrae, 7

Oct. 19 – Campbell Memorial, 7

Oct. 26 – at Champion, 7

Key Game

Brookfield began last season with a 1-4 record while facing teams who closed out the season with a combined 48-11 record. This year, they have McDonald, Cuyahoga Heights and South Range all visiting the 44403 zip code this Fall. Week one may prove to be the defining moment to the Warriors’ season against McDonald. 

2017 Team Stats

Scoring Offense: 24.4

Total Offense: 300.1

Passing Offense: 86.3

Rushing Offense: 213.8

Scoring Defense: 23.4

2017 Statistical Leaders

Passing: Hayden Gibson – 439 yards, 50.0% (34-68), 4 TDs

Rushing: Alex Clark – 1652 yards, 5.9 avg, 15 TDs*

Receiving: Gage Emery – 223 yards, 13 catches, 2 TDs

Tackles: Bryce Randall – 58*

Quarterback Sacks: Hayden O’Brien – 5*

Interceptions: Alex Bell* & Noah Hartnett* – 3

*-Graduated

Big 22 Recipients

2017: Alex Clark

2016: Xavier Bailey

2015: Augustus Necastro

2012: Ryan Mosora (2) & Jeremy Quinlan

2011: Ryan Mosora

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