Other than the Lancaster Legends no other team in Western New York lost more talent than the St. Joe’s Marauders this offseason.
Trey Bolling, Andy Gradolph, Phaybian Livingston, Nick Julian, Cam Dabill were just a handful of players lost to graduation. Losing seniors Casey Kelly and Jaden Lofton however was not something they were prepared for. Or were they?
Kelly transferred to Charlotte, NC to play for the 5th ranked team in the state, the Mallard Creek Mavericks. While Lofton ran into some off the field issues and was dismissed from the school entirely.
After watching Micah Brown perform in the Lancaster 7-on-7 tournament however, it appeared St. Joe’s might not have much of a drop off in talent at the QB position. In fact, Brown might be better. A junior, Brown has a cannon for an arm and moves extremely well in the pocket. He will present challenges with his legs as much as his arm for opposing defenses in the Monsignor Martin league.
David Medley, a sophomore will be counted on to help fill the void left by Lofton. Medley is a player that the Marauders coaching staff is excited about. An elusive runner with great speed much like Lofton.
Greg Poland Jr is a transfer from Williamsville North; he will be lining up at defensive end.
“We will know our strengths and weaknesses as we get rolling in the season against others,” Adam McCann said, speaking for head coach Derek Landri.
Two Marauders are already committed to play D1 football next fall. Tyler Doty is headed to the University of Buffalo while Cole Gambino is verbally committed to Stony Brook University. Both are core members of the offensive line. Doty (6’5, 290 lbs) enters his third season on varsity while Gambino measures in at 6’3 and 275 pounds and is also a three-year starter. The two should make life a little easier for both Brown and Medley.
This will be Landri’s third year as head coach at St. Joe’s.
It’s been nine years since the Marauders have beaten rival Canisius. The two powerhouses will meet up in week five at New Era Field in Orchard Park for the second straight season as part of an agreement with Pegula Sports and Entertainment.
The Marauders open up the season playing Bennett in a non-league game at All-High Stadium. The same place Landri made his WNY head coaching debut two years ago when they defeated South Park.
St. Joe’s will then play McDowell, McQuaid and Acquinas before taking on the Crusaders, which will be their first MMAA game.
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