Fall prep preview | Coupeville football

Change is plentiful for the Coupeville High School football program this fall.

It starts at the top where Tony Maggio takes over as head coach. Former coach Jay Silver left after two years for personal reasons and now leads Mount Vernon.

Another significant change is the Wolves’ schedule. Coupeville, the smallest school by far in enrollment in the Cascade Conference, will no longer play the larger schools from the league, skipping 2A Cedarcrest, Lakewood and powerhouse Archbishop Murphy.

This should help Coupeville be more competitive and protect it physically. The Wolves won only one conference game the past two years and were 3-16 overall. The pain went beyond the scoreboard; last year half of the 35-man squad ended the year on the injury list.

Another change will be the basic offensive set, switching to the wing from the spread.

Coupeville will run a more balanced attack, Maggio said, in reference to last year’s pass-oriented offense.

And, of course, there will be a change in personnel. Gone are a handful of seniors, including dynamic offensive weapon Mitch Pelroy and defensive stalwart Dalton Engle.

Maggio said the toughest part will be replacing the pair’s leadership. On the field, he will look to Jake Tumblin to pick up some of the slack.

Tumblin moves from quarterback to wing to better “utilize his speed,” Maggio said.

Returning lettermen along with junior Tumblin are seniors Danny Savalza, Kole Kellison, Riley Boyd, Caleb Valko, Serigio Guerro and Anthony Maggio; juniors Wade Schaef, Gunnar Langvold, Brett Arnold, Ben Haight, Nick Weatherford, Nick Streubel, Bryce Fleming and Jared Dickson; and sophomores Joel Walstad, Korbin Korzan, Miguel Rodriguez, Josh Bayne, Carson Riser, Aaron Wright and Matthew Hampton.

Key newcomers, according to coach Maggio, are senior Paul Schmakeit and juniors Alex Schmakeit, Joey Edwards, Kyle Kendall and Raymond Beiriger.

Maggio said he also has “a bunch of talented freshmen.”

The strength of the team will be up front. “Our offensive and defensive lines are very good,” Maggio said.

Anchoring the line is Maggio’s son, Anthony, a second-team, all-league choice last year. He will be joined by honorable mention returnees Valko and Streubel.

Langvold and Korzan are battling for the starting quarterback spot, Arnold and Savalza will handle fullback and Fleming, Bayne and Dickson are in mix with Tumblin to play wing.

Coach Maggio added, “Team speed is better overall than last season. We are a stronger team as the kids were in the weight room all year and all summer. All of our kids can catch the ball well and run good routes.”

The team is young (only six seniors) and depth is a concern, according to Maggio.

“I expect that we will compete in every game,” Maggio said, “and by compete I mean these kids will have the chance to win every game in the fourth quarter.”

Coupeville hosts Port Townsend at 5:30 p.m. Friday, Sept. 7.

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