The Pioneer football players had a pre-practice meeting where they talked about opportunity, expectations and sacrifice. Then they headed out onto the field under the bright lights of a new season with second-year coach Bill Bellers leading the way.
Bellers begins his sixth season with the purple and white and second as the coach in charge. Pioneer went 4-5 last year during his inaugural season.
Top returners include plenty of talent and depth up front. Both defensive lineman Komarus Hatch and Dennis Simmons are seniors coming off All-League performances a year ago.
Seniors Owen Saad and Dave Corey will anchor what should be a strong offensive line.
Seniors Michael McMullen and Logan Jacobs will play receiver and defensive back while senior Nate Chadwick will carry the ball and also play linebacker.
The top newcomers are TBD as Bellers and his staff continue to work with and evaluate his young players.
“I think both offensive and defensive lines should be much improved, and our skill group is talented,” Bellers said.
The key to success is spelled T-E-A-M.
“We must get to the point where every player plays for each other, our family mentality, in order for our team to reach its full potential,” Bellers said.
Pioneer opens at home against Anchor Bay at 7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 24.