The entire season will be a road trip for the Delaware Military Academy football team.
The Seahawks have never had their own stadium but have been able to play all of their home games at the same place in the past. DMA played home games at Caravel the last two seasons and used Baynard Stadium and Conrad as a home base before that.
But no deal could be worked out this year, so the Seahawks will play their 10 games in 10 different stadiums.
“It will be extremely challenging,” DMA coach Joe Aviola said. “Although we don’t have a home stadium, we had been playing at Caravel, and it was nice playing on the same field at least five times.
“You would like to have a routine,” Aviola added. “We’re all about routine – what time we bring the kids in, what time we stretch, which locker room we’re in. It would be nice to play in the same place a few times.”
The Seahawks have five home games, but two of them – Dickinson on Friday and Tower Hill on Sept. 21 – will be played on the opponent’s home field. DMA will host Milford as part of four high school games to be played Sept. 14 at Delaware Stadium. The Seahawks also have home games against St. Elizabeth on Oct. 19 at A.I. du Pont and against Archmere on Nov. 1 at McKean.
DMA will play road games at Laurel, St. Mark’s, Tatnall, Salesianum (at Baynard Stadium) and Conrad. But the Seahawks still have high hopes after going 7-4 and reaching the Division II state playoffs for the first time last season.
“We’ve talked about playing through adversity,” Aviola said. “The schedule is set, and we’re going to go play our 10 games. We hope to be as competitive as we can be.”
Lean and mean
Most linemen work to continually gain size through their high school career, but Newark’s Dutch VanDerhout is taking the opposite approach this season.
Two years ago, VanDerhout started on the offensive line as a 227-pound sophomore. Last year, he bulked up to 277 pounds and anchored both the offensive and defensive lines.
But the 6-foot-3 VanDerhout felt heavy, despite earning All-Blue Hen Flight A honors. So he slimmed down to 243 for his senior season.
“He started as a sophomore, but he was a one-way player,” Newark coach Butch Simpson said of VanDerhout. “When he got bigger and then became a two-way player, I think he felt like he was carrying a 10-year-old kid on his back. He just didn’t feel like he was the same player.
“I support what he has done. I think it’s best for the role that he has with us. College-wise, that will take care of itself as he probably becomes a defensive lineman.”
The Yellowjackets could be much improved after going 1-9 with a young lineup last season. VanDerhout will be the centerpiece of a big offensive line that will include Magnus Day, Donaven Earl, Chad Waters, Connor Kelly, Josh White and Adrian Ellis.
Newark has high hopes for new quarterback Ben Campbell, a 6-2, 178-pound junior who transferred from Milton Hershey (Pa.). The Yellowjackets will rely on Keith Stubbs, Austin Lockett, Ron Boskett, Chase Houck and Eric Wright to run the ball. Receivers Peter Suski, Darryl Chambers and J.T. MacDonnell tight ends Joe Burton and Alexis Lacen will catch it.
Many of those players will double up on defense, along with DL Andrew Thomas, DEs Chris Williams and Tymeer Jones and DB Josh Rivera. Kicker Roland Attoh-Okine also returns.
The Delaware Interscholastic Athletic Association recently named 17 schools from across the state as 2012-13 DIAA state champions in sportsmanship.
William Penn continues to be the king of the award, winning for the 16th consecutive year. Smyrna High and Gunning Bedford Middle School earned the award for the first time.
Others earning the award were Tower Hill (eighth time), Sussex Tech and Brandywine (seven), Hodgson (six), Caravel, Lake Forest, McKean, A.I. du Pont and Wheatley Middle School (five), Conrad (four), Seaford, Appoquinimink and Woodbridge (three) and Sanford (two).
Rounding it up
* Archmere tight end Conor Furey has committed to continue his football career at Yale.
* Caravel’s Jackie Gillen has committed to play field hockey at the University of Vermont.
* Recent Concord graduate Jack Ruello will play football at Wesley College this fall.