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FOOTBALL PREVIEW--North Atlanta hopes to make progress in new season
by Greg Oshust
August 23, 2013 05:21 PM | 1507 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Samantha M. Shal
North Atlanta’s Joseph Morone, left, tries to evade teammate Quentin Florentina (56), who is being blocked by Robert Wooten, during a practice drill.
Staff / Samantha M. Shal North Atlanta’s Joseph Morone, left, tries to evade teammate Quentin Florentina (56), who is being blocked by Robert Wooten, during a practice drill.
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North Atlanta is looking to take a step forward as it continues its rebuilding program under second-year coach Doug Britten.

The process continued in earnest during the offseason and Britten saw some encouraging signs of progress from his team, which went 1-9 in 2012.

“We’re still trying to build the program,” he said. “We’re pretty young. We put in some good work over the summer and attendance in the summer workouts was better than last year, so we’re on the right track.”

Britten said he sees how far along the Warriors have come since taking the reins before the ’12 season.

“One place where we’ve made some progress is my coaching staff,” he said. “This year, we have a full coaching staff. We have eight varsity coaches and three ninth-grade coaches, which is making a huge difference. This transfers directly to the players, because the players — obviously — are a lot more knowledgeable in our system. I see a lot of difference in our training, our conditioning and our coaching.

“Our overall team discipline has really improved, so I think that will really help us — being a disciplined team will help us be a little more successful.”

The road to success is still an uphill battle, however, for a North Atlanta squad that returns only two starters on offense and three on defense.

“We have a lot of holes to fill,” Britten said. “We don’t have a lot of experience. Our youth is going to cause us some issues. Our biggest challenge is getting our kids ready to play at such a high level.”

While North Atlanta is especially young in the skill positions on both offense and defense, the Warriors do show some promise on both the offensive and defensive lines.

Seniors Zach Aachab and DeAngelo Bowen, junior Dominique Jenkins and sophomores Joel Maldonado lead the way on the offensive line.

On defense, Maldonado and Bowen anchor the line and Aachab leads the linebacker corps.

With such a young lineup, building and development will be the main focus for North Atlanta, according to Britten, whose Warriors face the daunting task of playing in a formidable Region 6AAAAA that includes the likes of state powerhouses Tucker, Stephenson, M.L. King and Southwest DeKalb.

“Our goal is to make sure we’re getting better every week and we become more competitive in our region,” he said.

SCHEDULE

Aug. 30 Stone Mountain (Grady Stadium)

Sept. 6 at Tucker* (Adams Stadium)

Sept. 13 Miller Grove* (Grady)

Sept. 21 at M.L. King* (Hallford Stadium)

Sept. 27 Mays* (Lakewood Stadium)

Oct. 12 at Southwest DeKalb* (Hallford)

Oct. 19 at Arabia Mountain* (Panthersville Stadium)

Oct. 25 Dunwoody* (Lakewood)

Nov. 1 at Lakeside (DeKalb)* (Adams)

Nov. 7 Stephenson* (Grady)

*denotes region game
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