Week 1 football: Williamsport at Nanticoke
Williamsport (3-8 last year) is hoping to improve to 6-0 in season openers under coach Chuck Crews. The Millionaires will be playing without starting quarterback Dallas Griess after he broke his collar bone, but Frankie Marrone played well in his absence toward the end of last season so this is not unchartered territory.
Williamsport has a strong group back from last season’s young team and returns four starting offensive linemen. The defense was among the area’s best throughout the first five weeks last fall and reigning Wyoming Valley Conference Defensive Player of the Year, defensive end Nassir Jones, anchors what could be a stout unit. Watch out for Avery Campbell on the other side as well as players like Charles Crews and Lajear Whaley.
Marrone threw for 171 yards in a Week 10 against Wyoming Valley West last season and slot back Keith Freeman is a three-year starter who can do damage in many ways. Freeman twice topped 100 yards rushing last year and Jones went over 100 yards receiving twice as well.
Nanticoke is coming off a 2-8 season, but was a young team last season and returns several starters. The Trojans did build some momentum for 2020 when they closed the season with a 39-20 win against Hanover. The previous two seasons Nanticoke went 6-5 and, like Williamsport, is hoping for a big bounce-back season.