New players to step into leadership roles at Derry

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Sunday, August 15, 2021 | 6:01 AM


Derry lost 14 seniors to commencement but quickly replenished the roster with 14 freshmen. That doesn’t mean the team will get nearly the production of last year’s 12th graders.

In fact, a rebuild could be in the works for the Trojans, but the current 12-man senior group is ready to carve out its own identity — with help from future prospects.

“Our strength is our chemistry,” senior quarterback Zack Revoir said. “The (upperclassmen) have been working with the younger guys to help get them ready (for the varsity level). We have to show them the Derry way.”

Heading into summer training camp, Revoir was competing for the starting quarterback job with his brother, freshman Blake Revoir. The elder sibling was a tailback last season.

“We’re a very young team, and we lost a lot of leadership,” second-year coach Vince Skillings said. “I want to see which seniors we have this year will step up into those roles.”

Skillings saw the Trojans finish 2-3 (2-2 in the Class 3A Allegheny Conference) in his first season as a head coach. The Trojans’ final two games were chopped off in a covid-shortened season.

With some size returning on the line, Skillings thinks his ball carriers can produce.

Dylan Rhodes, Noah Cymmerman, Brayden Mickinac, Carter Short (6-foot-5, 305 pounds) and Carson Chamberlain are senior linemen, while other blockers include junior Dom Patrick and sophomore Maddux Bush.

“We’re relying on the line to protect the (running backs) and give them room to roam,” Skillings said. “We want to get the ball into our playmakers’ hands and let them make plays.”

Look for senior Eric Catone and sophomores Ahmad Ward and Mason Beeman to carry the ball. They also will be linebackers.

“They will be carrying the load for our running game,” Skillings said. “We’re still going to run the ball. This is Derry football.”

Receivers include senior Conner Lucas and freshmen Damauri Robinson and Noah Berkhuer.

Derry should have one of the best kickers in the WPIAL in senior Chance White, who connected on a field goal from 58 yards during a camp in West Virginia.

“We won’t hesitate to send him out there,” Skillings said. “Forty yards and in, we’ll take a shot.”

The Trojans will work out of a multiple offense and a 4-3 defense.

Derry

Coach: Vince Skillings

2020 record: 2-3, 2-2 in Class 3A Allegheny Seven Conference

All-time record: 266-348-14

SCHEDULE

Date, Opponent, Time

8.27 at Latrobe, 7

9.3 Mt. Pleasant, 7

9.10 at Indiana, 7

9.17 Deer Lakes*, 7

9.24 at Freeport*, 7

10.1 at Southmoreland*, 7

10.8 Valley*, 7

10.15 at East Allegheny*, 7

10.22 Burrell*, 7

10.29 at North Catholic*, 7

*Conference game

STATISTICAL LEADERS

Passing: Nick Detore*

34 of 72, 499 yards, 6 TDs

Receiving: Hunter Wack*

12-182, 3 TDs

Rushing: Matt McDowell*

61-413, 3 TDs

*Graduated

FAST FACTS

• Skillings is a former Derry standout running back who went on to play defensive back at Ohio State and in the Canadian Football League. He is an ordained minister.

• An entirely new coaching staff, made up of all Derry alums, includes: Justin Hayes (offensive coordinator), Justin Hill (running backs), Justin Fallat (lines), Levi Humberger (lines), Nate Angus (quarterbacks), and Watson Smith (line).

• Ahmad Ward, Eric Catone and Zack Revoir carried the ball last season but combined for only 15 carries and 106 yards. Catone had two pass receptions.

• Senior linemen Brayden Mikinac and Dylan Rhodes were second-team all-conference selections.

ROSTER

No., Name, Pos., Ht./Wt., Cl.

3, Connor Lucas, WR, 5-10/160, Sr.

7, Zack Revoir, QB, 5-9/150, Sr.

11, Damari Robinson, WR, 6-0/155, Fr.

15, Jason Ruckel, SS, 5-9/155, Fr.

16, Noah Berkhimer, WR, 6-0/175, Fr.

18, Dylan Klim, WR, 5-8/150, Jr.

19, Chance White, K, 5-11/175, Sr.

22, Ahmad Ward, RB, 5-10/190, So.

24, Blake Revoir, QB, 5-11/150, Fr.

27, Mason Beeman, FB, 6-1/215, So.

29, Nate Gray, K, 5-10/205, So.

31, Nate Barkley, LB, 5-10/185, LB

33, Brett Klim, WR, 5-8/145, Fr.

34, Eric Catone, RB, 6-0/185, Sr.

42, Jordan Flack, SS, 5-11/175, Jr.

45, Vince Dudzinsky, TE/OL, 6-1/180, Fr.

52, Brayden Mickinac, OL, 5-10/205, Sr.

53, Jacob Court, DL, 5-11/225, Sr.

54, Hunter Schmidtetter, OL, 6-0/180, Fr.

55, Dom Patrick, OL, 5-11/190, Jr.

56, Carter Short, OL, 6-5/305, Sr.

57, Brian O’Barto, OL, 6-0/260, Sr.

60, Collin Barkley, OL, 5-9/185, Fr.

62, Dylan Rhodes, OL, 5-11/220, Sr.

65, Owen Monnich, OL, 6-1/190, Fr.

66, Noah Cymmerman, OL, 5-11/260, Sr.

68, Carson Chamberlain, OL, 5-10/200, Sr.

69, Jacob Harris, WR, 5-9/185, Fr.

70, Ethan Bendel, OL, 5-9/200, Fr.

77, Maddux Bush, OL, 6-5/240, So.

79, Greg Smith, OL, 5-10/250, Sr.

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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