Football preview: New coach leads Wheaton Academy

AT A GLANCE

Class: 5A

Coach: Brad Thornton

2012 record: 4-5

Conference: Suburban Christian Gold, 4-3, T-1st

TOP RETURNERS

Taylor Johnson sr. OL/DL

Daniel Sedjo sr. OL/DL

Nathan Lopez sr. QB/DB

Camden Meade jr. RB/LB

John Gemmel sr. RB/LB

KEY NEWCOMERS

Luis Ramos jr. RB/DB

Scottie McLean jr. RB/LB

Marino Costello jr. TE/DE

Josh Dutton jr. OL/DL

2013 SCHEDULE

Aug. 30 at Westminster, MO, 5 p.m.

Sept. 6 Noble Street Charter, 7 p.m.

Sept. 13 Montini, 7 p.m.

Sept. 20 at Aurora Christian, 7 p.m.

Sept. 28 Walther Lutheran, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 5 Guerin, 1 p.m.

Oct. 11 at St. Edward, 7 p.m.

Oct. 18 at Chicago Christian, 7:30 p.m.

Oct. 25 Marian Central, 7:30 p.m.

FIVE-YEAR RECORD

w-l conf. playoffs

'12 4-5 4-3 DNQ

'11 1-8 0-5 DNQ

'10 5-4 3-2 DNQ

'09 6-5 3-2 2nd round

'08 4-5 3-3 DNQ

BY THE NUMBERS

16: Rushing touchdowns scored in 2012 by John Gemmel, who gained 872 yards on 131 carries for an average of 6.7 yards per attempt

41.6: Average points given up by Wheaton Academy in its five losses last fall; during their four-game winning streak, the Warriors yielded only 19.7 points per contest

WEEK 1 MATCHUP

Who: Wheaton Academy vs. Westminster Christian (Mo.)

When: 5 p.m. Friday

Where: Town & Country, Missouri

2012 records: Wheaton Academy 4-5

Outlook: The Brad Thornton era begins with a familiar foe in Westminster, which Wheaton Academy has opened with the past two seasons. The Warriors are looking for their first win in the series, having dropped a 38-19 decision last year at home after falling, 27-14, in 2011. Wheaton Academy returns eight starters on offense, including an experience O-line, and five starters on defense. Nathan Lopez takes over at quarterback.