Wolves Look Ahead to 2017 at Annual Spring Football Game


Alyssa King

Sameer Alzer and Brant McDonald take the field before last year’s playoff came against Bryan at UMHB

Nick Hedges, Reporter

Just before summer falls upon Cedar Park, the football team gets a head start for the 2017 season. Preparations for the new year culminate in the spring game, a multi-game showcase of all the work the JV and varsity teams have put in during the off season. As far as next season is concerned, the Wolves feel they are headed in the right direction.

“Constant improvement was what we talked about the most,” head coach Carl Abseck said.  “We want to grow a little better every day, with hard work and commitment to excellence. Then we carry it over to the summer and fall. We are looking forward to a great summer of work and improvement in order to come back stronger for 2017 and make a run.”

Offensively, the Wolves will be poised to remain as one of the more potent groups in the state. They bring back the majority of their play-makers, including senior quarterback Mak Sexton, but will have to replace graduating running back Tyler Lavine. It seems the Wolves will look to recuperate lost production out wide, as Drew McDaniel and Payden Sawicki all return for their senior seasons, while Carson Neel will come back as a junior.

“I think our offense is going to be strong and difficult to stop,” Neel said. “Spring was a good start for us and we have a lot of talent in the passing game.”

On defense, the Wolves don’t return as much talent as they will on offense, but there is still enough veteran leadership to lead the black rain. Gunnar Chriswisser and Keegan Nichols will both be asked to take on bigger roles on the team as they come back for their senior years. That experience, combined with fresh ability coming in through Logan Mayou or Levi Russo Bell, will be key to the success of the state-famous Cedar Park defense.

“Since I didn’t get to actually play in the spring because of surgery on my shoulder, it allowed me to really step back and help coach some of the younger guys on defense and take some of the load off the coaches,” Chriswisser said. “Compared to last spring, we’ve come a long way, and I think that since we’ve grown so much as a team, we can carry that momentum into the fall and have a pretty good football team.”

The 2017 schedule lays out similarly to 2016. Cedar Park will get a tough test to open the season in a scrimmage against Westlake. The regular season will open at Gupton against Waco Midway on Friday, Sept. 1. After a trip down 620 to face Vandegrift, district play will open with the homecoming game against Bastrop. The Wolves will also play Rouse, Georgetown and Hutto at Gupton in 2017.