2018 High School Football Preview: Whitewater

posted by Jimmie Kaska - 

The Whippets are still in the process of building their program, seeking their first playoff berth since the 2009 season. Behind a strong incoming junior class, Whitewater football appears to have better days ahead.

Whitewater did manage to snap a 15-game losing streak in 2017, beating Brodhead/Juda in Week 7 last season. Getting in the left column was step number one for a program in the building phases of its development.

Whippets athletic director Jim Pease is serving as interim coach this season for the second season, with the intent on bringing in a new head coach for the 2019 campaign. This season could lay some groundwork towards getting that coach off to a solid start, with both all-conference players returning coming from the 2020 class. That includes defensive back/running back Will Leibbrand, who has been honorable mention all-Rock Valley two years in a row. He's joined in the all-conference honorable mention list by teammate Cooper Pease, who played some quarterback and linebacker last season.

Another returning player from that class is running back/defensive back Aldo Soto, who also served as a kick returner last season. There's also a group of offensive and defensive linemen in the incoming junior class, including Gehrig Monday, who plays tight end and quarterback on offense in addition to manning the defensive line.

The senior class isn't huge, but still brings back linemen like Arturo Franco and Hunter Abramson, and skill position players such as Will Lawton, Ismael, Barajas, Julio Espinozo, and Tyler Lippens.

2018 opens on the road against Beloit Turner, before Whitewater's home opener against East Troy on August 24. Back-to-back road games follow, at defending Rock Valley Conference champion Clinton and at Big Foot. Week 5 is a neutral site match-up, as McFarland and Whitewater will actually play at Perkins Stadium on the campus of UW-Whitewater.

On September 21, the Whippets head to Evansville/Albany, before returning home to face Brodhead/Juda, the only team Whitewater has beaten in two seasons. October starts with a drive over on Highway 59 to Edgerton, before hosting Jefferson to conclude the 2018 regular season.

Whitewater Whippets - Rock Valley

Interim Head Coach: Jim Pease (2nd Season), 1-8 Overall

2017 Result: 1-8, 10th in the Rock Valley

Three-Year Record: 3-24

2017 All-Conference Honors: 0 First-Team, 2 Second-Team, 3 Honorable Mention (5 total)

Three-Year All-Conference Totals: 3 First-Team, 7 Second-Team, 9 Honorable Mention (19 total)

Returning All-Conference Players (2): CB/RB Will Leibbrand (HM-DB in 2017 and 2016), Jr.; LB/QB/TE Cooper Pease (HM-LB), Jr.

Other Players To Watch: WR/DB Julio Espinozo, Sr.; OL/DL/P Arturo Franco, Sr.; OL/DL Hunter Abramson, Sr.; RB/LB Ismael Barajas, Sr.; WR/DB Tyler Lippens, Sr.; WR/DB Will Lawton, Sr.; QB Dylan Pease, Sr.; RB/LB/ST Aldo Soto, Jr.; QB/TE/DL Gehrig Monday, Jr.; WR/DB Thomas Utynek, Jr.; TE/DL Broderick Frye, Jr.; OL/DL Jose Soto, Jr.; OL/DL Malachi Fletcher, Jr.; OL/DL Zach Porter, Jr.

2018 Schedule: Go Here

BIG Games: vs East Troy, August 24; vs McFarland (at UW-Whitewater), September 13; vs Jefferson, October 12

Information from WisSports.net was used in this preview. Visit WisSports.net for everything you need to gear up for the high school sports season.

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