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2014 Parsippany Hills Vikings Football Preview


If all goes according to plan, the Parsippany Hills Vikings have an excellent chance of winning head coach Dave Albano another state championship. The hardest part of the Vikings journey will be getting to the playoffs. Once there, things should actually get easier. They really don’t get many breaks in their regular-season schedule. They have to face Pope John and Sparta, both of which I predict will be Top 10 teams in the state when it’s all over. They also go up against a Morris Hills team that is full of attitude. West Morris is on their schedule too, and they are coached by Kevin Hennelly who has more state championship rings than fingers. Sprinkle in Vernon, High Point, Montville and Chatham teams that are looking to make a name for themselves and you have a schedule that will force the Vikes to be sharp every week. The only break they get is playing Roxbury after the eight game playoff cut off so that game won’t have playoff ramifications. However, if Par Hills makes it to the post season, they won’t face anyone better than the teams they will have faced in the regular season. With all that said, I personally feel extremely good about this Viking team. First of all, it’s a very tight knit group of talented kids that have been playing with each other for years. And secondly, and most important, they are pissed about last season’s state final loss to Summit (13-16).

The Make Up of the Offense
Albano’s offense is run like a fast-breaking basketball team. They mostly operate out of the shot gun and typically throw the ball a lot more than they run it. The key to this offense is having all the right players in the right positions. Another reason why I think this team will go far is all of the pieces are in place. Quarterbacking this crew is rifle-armed Nick Verducci. Protecting him up front will be led by linemen Kyle McGinley and Luke Haltigan. Catching the ball will be the team of Anthony Barlotta, Matt Joyce, Nick Hill and Ryan Shaw. Running the ball will be the shifty Angelo Gallego and JD Keyes. The big bruising fullback is Jared Salgado.

Who’s Playing Defense?
On the defensive side, Gallego, Barlotta, Joyce, Keyes, Nick Hill, Shaw, Haltigan and Salgado will be doing double duty as two-way starters. Ryan Hill will add some beef on the line.

Surprising Strength
Par Hills opponents are used to Albano beating them with speed and quickness. This particular Viking team has hit the weight room in the offseason and has put on a lot of muscle. This will bode well up front in the trenches. All this means opposing teams will need to deal with the constant quick jabs to the chin while always accounting for the knockout punch.

The Schedule
09-13 West Morris
09-19 @ Vernon
09-27 @ Pope John
10-02 Morris Hills
10-10 @ High Point
10-18 Montville
10-25 Sparta
11-01 @ Chatham
11-07 @ Roxbury

What the North 2, Group 3 Section Looks Like
Cliffside Park
Fort Lee
Governor Livingston
Morris Hills
Newark West Side
North Plainfield
Palisades Park
Parsippany Hills
West Essex

George Muha has been covering high school sports since 2006. He feels high school scholar-athletes are the most important part of the community and highlighting their achievements on the field, in the classroom and within the community is his personal mission.

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