“Our line play will be an area where we’ll lean on,” says Pavlansky
CORTLAND, Ohio (WKBN) – Lakeview begins their first season in the Northeast 8 Conference. Rebounding from a disappointing 4-6 campaign – their 1st losing season since 2002 – the Bulldogs have won 6 or more games 15 times in Tom Pavlansky’s 20 years as the head coach of the program. The Bulldogs now have their work cut out for them in the strong NE 8 where half of the league a year ago had winning records. “We have 22 open positions,” says coach Pavlansky. “(Fourteen players) have returning starter experience from 2018. We are expecting our seniors to have career years in all phases of the game. We expect everyone to compete and improve each day.”
Head Coach: Tom Pavlansky, 21st season (128-83)
2018 record (AAC White): 4-6 (2-4), 6th place
Five Key Points
1.Lakeview has not experienced back-to-back losing seasons since 2001 (4-6) & 2002 (4-6).
2.Prior to last season, the Bulldog offense last averaged under 20-points per game in 2006 (12.2).
3.Lakeview closes out their time in the AAC with 3 league titles – last which came in 2017
4.In 2018, no Bulldog threw for 1000-yards, rushed for 1000-yards or hauled in passes for 500-yards. Second time in more than a decade and a half.
5.Finished last year with a 2-3 mark at home. First losing season since 2012 (2-3) in Cortland.
Scoring Offense: 16.7 (39th in Area)
Rushing Offense: 143.7
Passing Offense: 40.5
Total Offense: 184.2
…Lakeview saw a reduction in 2018 in scoring (30.6 to 16.7), total offensive yardage (329.5 to 184.2), and passing offense (189.6 to 40.5). The rebuild centers around the replacement of First-Team All-AAC selection Dakota Whitt. He played a huge role in the production from all aspects of the offense including a team-lead in rushing (943 yards, 11 TDs) as well as making 6 receptions and completing 9 of 24 passes for 65 yards.
“We need everyone to do what they are capable of,” says Pavlansky. “It’s going to be a committee approach. One just doesn’t immediately replace two kids, who were as talented as Dakota (Whitt) and Tony (Crish). We need to be patient and take the summer teaching days and the fall camp to get a grasp at what our strengths are and where we need to improve.”
The team returns their junior quarterback Stephen Pavlansky, who threw for 306 yards and 2 touchdowns. Pavlansky will have a couple of key returnees at the receiver positions Grayson Zinni, Matt McRoberts and sophomore Gavin Mauger – who led the team in yards per catch (16.9) a year ago. Senior rusher Isaac Russo is also back in the fold. Along the offensive line, 5 players had started at least a game in Sebastian Butter and James Rea – both seniors – as well as juniors Kyle Roberts and Austin Evans and sophomore Brady Mocella.
Scoring Defense: 27.8 (41st in Area)
Total Defense: 301.9
…For only the 5th time in the last 14 years, the Bulldogs permitted 20-points or more per game in 2018 (27.8). The defense graduates their top two tacklers (Dakota Whitt and Tony Crish) but return a lot of talented underclassmen including junior defensive lineman Kyle Roberts (53 tackles, 6 TFL, 7 QB sacks) as well as linebackers Isaac Russo (40 tackles, 6 TFL), Jake Wilms (35 tackles) and Gabe Senkowitz (31 tackles, 2 INTs) in the front seven. Also returning up front is sophomore Ben Stirling and senior lineman James Rea. Senior defensive backs Grayson Zinni and Matt McRoberts both return as well.
First-Team kicking specialist Brendon Kilpatrick is also back after punting for an average of 30.4 yards per 42 boots. He also connected on 5 of 6 field goals and 18 of 21 extra point attempts.
Aug. 30 – at Kirtland
Sept. 6 – Liberty
Sept. 13 – Firestone
Sept. 20 – at Girard
Sept. 27 – Struthers
Oct. 4 – Hubbard
Oct. 11 – at Poland
Oct. 18 – South Range
Oct. 25 – Niles
Nov. 1 – at Jefferson