By Stan Veitch/Sports Correspondent
Gaston High, ranked 10th in Class 2A in the Alabama Sports Writers Association’s preseason top 10, plays in one of the toughest regions in 2A – Region 7. That region is headed by No. 1 and defending state champion Fyffe and also includes No. 8 Cleveland.
“I feel like the other teams in the region have all improved too,” Bulldogs coach Swane Morris said. “In this region, you’ve got to be totally prepared weekly or you’ll get tripped up.”
The region also includes West End, Collinsville, Ider and Section.
Gaston returns senior quarterback Jordan Douglas, as well as senior running back Jashun Cammeron, so there will be some experience in the backfield.
Douglas last season finished with 1,162 combined passing and rushing yards and nine touchdowns, while Cammeron rushed for 597 yards and seven touchdowns.
Junior D.J. Pope, a newcomer, will be the other ru-nning back, the guy who “will tote the ball 20 times a game,” Morris said.
Senior linemen Devin Chappell and Dezmund Sandridge also return, with newcomer Bubba Satterfield anchoring the offensive line at center. Chappell made first-team all-state last year, while Sandridge was an all-region selection.
Junior Cameron Peacock, who had 124 tackles returns at middle linebacker.
“Probably my best surprise is how well the new kids have responded and have handled learning the playbook,” Morris said. “There are always new kids, but this year’s have really done particularly well so far. Also, the leadership shown by our veterans has been outstanding.”
Assistant coaches are Lee Wadsworth, Matt Watson and Jesse Pruitt.