Even though fans are limited, this football season gives hope for the future

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Madeline Williamson

The Lancers lineup on defense, as they await the Knights play on first down.

by Jason Byrd and Gio Fuentes

The short URL of the present article is: https://lhslance.org/k3t5p

After a lot of anticipation, a short season, and missing the first game against Oakdale (due to a covid positive test), LHS beat Middletown by a score of 29-19 on March 19. Senior running backs Xander McClure and Brady Domroe, in typical Linganore fashion, combined for 246 yards on 39 carries and three touchdowns.

Lancer football is back.

The bigger headline is the new-found connection between quarterback Timmy Conner and wide receiver Zach Keisling, who had six catches for 104 yards and a touchdown. Coach Rick Conner raved about Keisling, as he said in a Frederick News-Post article, “He’s a physical freak in the weight room. So, we thought he was a defensive player. We found out during 7-on-7 [in the fall] he was an offensive player.”

Keisling is now playing a new offensive role, and Conner maturing into a confident quarterback–his junior status means 2021-2022 football will start strong.

The game went back and forth, as the Knights would trade scores with the Lancers up until the fourth quarter. After Knights quarterback Gage Queen failed to get a 2-point conversion, the Lancers led 21-19. The final blow was a goal line run by Domroe to secure the win. 

Linganore has been a football powerhouse, so much so, that the current seniors can’t remember a losing season. Every fall, the student and staff  cheer on the Lancers on the thrilling Friday nights with the band playing proud, the student section jam packed with kids of all ages, but most importantly, Lancers being together in one stadium.

Fans have mourned the loss of football, and the anticipation for six games (now five) is high.

Eight months of waiting has not been easy for the players, either.

Trevor Arnett, a member of the class of 2021 and starting free safety, stayed prepared.  He said, “I went to the gym and lifted a lot so that helped to get me in shape and be ready for the season.”

He said, “Going to the Oakdale practice field with some guys from the team and playing against each other,” allowed him to stay football ready. During the off season Arnett along with a few fellow Lancers decided to meet up with a few players from the Oakdale team and get some practice in on their own time.

This season Arnett has managed to lock up a starting role, and he has committed to Frostburg State University. He shadowed Ben Musselman in the 2019-2020 season.

Coach Conner has built a strong football culture at Linganore. Many of his players were itching to play and found ways to be season-ready. 

To many students-athletes, football is more than just a sport. For some, getting a scholarship or a chance to play football at the next level is a lifelong goal. Without that extra practice and season, they feel as if they are missing that opportunity.  The main argument for this shortened season is to give these athletes a chance to build skills for college.

They look forward to a matchup against the Walkersville Lions on March 26. Even with limited fans, friends, and family in attendance, the extra energy at the game made it feel like a much more normal game. Make sure to follow the Linganore football and Frederick Sports pages on Twitter to catch up on all the latest scores.