Erie Mason 2021 Season Preview

2020 was a fantastic year for the high-flying Eagles. Erie Mason would go on to win the Tri-County Conference while averaging a school-record 52.25 Points per game. The Eagles would bow out to the eventual state runner-up in the pre-district playoff round. Coach Beaudrie stepped aside which paves the way for a new era in Erie. Head Coach Steven Bowers is now at the helm, as Mason looks to defend its TCC crown.

Rounding out Coach Bowers’ staff will be: Gabe McQuaide Varsity Asst/DC, David Kelly JV/Varsity Asst, Justin Gessner JV Head Coach, Dylan Bell JV/Varsity Asst, Ryan Thomas JV/Varsity Asst, Steven Jozefowicz  JV/Varsity Asst, Brian Hoppert JV/Varsity Asst./Equipment, Kyle Lee Middle School Head Coach JV/Varsity Asst.

Returning letter winners: 18

Returning offensive starters: Bryce Gardiner (12) OL, Bryce Diehl (12) WR, Blake Shipe (12) WR.

Returning defensive starters: Zach Perchard (12) DT, Cooper Kinsey (12) DE, Aiden McMullen (12) LB, Gavin Larrow (12) LB, Elija Araiza (12) LB, Blake Shipe (12) LB, Colin Smith (12) DB, Trent Herrera (11) DB.

Players to keep an eye on:

Cooper Kinsey (12) DE, 51 tackles, 22 TFL, 4 sacks last year. 2020 All-TCC and MHSFCA All-Region.

Bryce Diehl (12) WR/DB, 19 receptions 396 yards, 9 TDs. 4 INTs 2020 All-TCC, MHSFCA All-Region, Toledo Blade All-Area.

Blake Shipe (12) WR/LB, 22 tackles. Senior leader in the off-season.

Colin Smith (12) CB/WR, Off-Season Senior leader.

Elija Araiza (12) LB, 49 tackles, 5 TFL. 4 year varsity starter.

Gavin Larrow (12) LB, 56 tackles, 5.5 TFL.

Bryce Gardiner (12) Center, Only returning starter on the offensive line. Strongest player on the team.

Newcomers to look out for:

Competing for the starting QB spot are sophomores, Vaughn Brown and Cole Kreger. Both are hard-working 3-sport athletes, who have been in the weight room and at 7 on 7s all summer. This is a very close battle between two deserving players.

Comment from Coach Bowers:This should be an interesting year in the TCC. 4 of the 7 teams have new head coaches. We are excited for the opportunity to defend our TCC title and compete for another. We have a solid core of our defense back from last year but have to replace several 3-4 years starters who were the heart and soul of our high-performing offense last year. Losing 4 of 5 starters up front and all-staters Tanner Herrera and Noah Beaudrie, we will have a lot of inexperience on the offensive side of the ball looking to fill those shoes and prove themselves this season. When it comes to the TCC, I really think Adrian-Madison could be the team to look out for. The hiring of Coach Gallagher in the off-season was huge for the Trojans. They have a lot of great athletes and have had impressive turnouts for their spring and summer workouts. You can never count Whiteford out of TCC title contention, while Sand Creek has been impressive the last several years, and it will be exciting to continue our matchup with Summerfield for the 10th year in a row and see how they ride the wave of their remarkable playoff run last season. It would also be great to see Morenci and Pittsford, two teams with exceptional winning traditions and playoff experience, make the TCC competitive top to bottom.”

FNV Outlook: With 8 returning starters on defense, you could see a shift in how the game is played in Erie. Maybe more ball control, relying more on the defensive side to win ball games. Losing most of the offensive line and of course the Beaudrie/Herrera connection, it will be nearly impossible to replace that production… and the fans shouldn’t expect it to be replaced. They should however expect the Eagles to continue their winning ways of 2020 and very much be in contention for a back-to-back TCC championship.

1 thought on “Erie Mason 2021 Season Preview”

  1. Very interested to see who wins the QB spot this year for Mason. I helped coach both and just interested to see which way that Bowers will want to go.

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