Shadyside Tigers 2019 High School Football Preview


The Shadyside Tigers were a playoff team for the 14th consecutive year in a row in 2018, and made a run to the regional finals. This year the Tigers celebrate their program’s 100th year.

For the Shadyside Tigers, football is a lifestyle. And head coach Mark Holenka says the hard work and dedication preached on the field, really shows through his team’s program.

We’ve always had good chemistry, I think we care about each other and I told them it only gets better as you go because once you invest in conditioning and time, pain, and crying on each other’s shoulders, that chemistry and hard love develops overtime and that’s a big part of success

Mark Holenkia- Head Coach

On offense, the Tigers have first-year QB, sophomore and letterman Rhys Francis.

Mason VanNest will be playing wide receiver.

Junior letterman Alec Shepherd will be a key wide receiver, along with three-time letterman Kelly Hendershot and junior 2-time letterman Jordan Joseph.

I think we’ll be pretty diversified but it’s going to start with our running game, our running game is probably the most trustworthy thing we’ve got right now and we’ve got a first year quarterback, and he’s a sophomore so therefore it will give him time to get adjusted but if not, and then we can run the ball and not have to put the pressure on him but if not, I think he’s very capable though

Mark Holenkia- Head Coach

At running back, the Tigers have junior, 2-time letterman Jacob Visnic who also plays linebacker, along with sophomore letterman, Wyatt Rayman.

Three-time letterman Jacob Klugg will also play running back and linebacker on defense.

Sam Merryman will a two way player at tight end and also defensive end along with Ryan Florence, and Devon Robinson.

And Matt Lucey will be an offensive lineman and defensive end.

And it looks like this year, the Tigers defense returns some skilled talent.

Defensively, we’ve got a lot of a good nucleus back, I think we’ve got 8 of 11 back and some were young last year, we actually played 3 freshmen last year, so now they’ve grown up and become sophomores and they played a lot last year because of injury and now that injury kind of helped us this year and that’s what happens a lot of time, you develop depth but I think our defense maybe to start off should be the stronger suit of the two sides.

Mark Holenkia- Head Coach

The Tigers are coming off of a playoff year, and this season, they have a challenging schedule.

Oh gee, I think it’s tough. When you open up with Martins Ferry, that’s not easy and then you go straight to Mogadore, in the second game who we’ve played maybe 3 time but they’re a playoff team in Ohio so you don’t get a break, then you got the state champs coming in game 4, and Magnolia in between there so we go through a terrible group of M’s, Martins Ferry, Mogadore, Magnolia and then Wheeling Central.

Mark Holenkia- Head Coach

And when it comes to preparing for these matchups, Shadyside has a plan.

I think we’ve got a lot of talent but I don’t know how much talent we have as far as depth so we got to worry about making sure we bang a little bit but we’ve also got to check the injury bug so that’s what we do, we got to hit them and make sure we’re hitting them hard enough and then condition the rest of the time because in small school football most people are going both ways

Mark Holenkia- Head Coach

The Shadyside Tigers kick off their season on Friday, August 30 against Martins Ferry at 7 pm.

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