Big Seven Conference

Northgate opened last season with plenty of optimism and was hoping to make some noise in both the Black Hills conference and WPIAL Class A.

But the Flames never really got rolling and as a result finished a disappointing 3-4 in the conference and 5-4 overall.

And now Northgate coach T.J. Wiley must figure out how to replace the production his two best players from a year ago, quarterback Chris Gibbons and four-year starter, guard Jon Lenoski, who both graduated.

The Flames, however, do have a lot of other players returning as they only lost 12 seniors and had a number of underclassmen play key roles for them.

The strength of the team will be the offensive line as it is anchored by two players who have played a lot of games the last two years – 6-foot-1, 280-pound tackle Caleb Turner and 5-foot-11 senior guard Ray Mangone.

The offense also returns Surron Adams (5-6, 170), who is one of the better running backs in the conference and speedy wide receiver Stefon Adams.

The defense will need to be rebuilt a little bit but a good place to start is rugged nose tackle Perry Dorsey (5-10, 240).